This story originally ran in 2012. We’re reposting it to coincide with Mortal Kombat 2’s 25th anniversary. This past school year, Columbia student Kenny Voong wanted to make a videogame. He just didn’t quite know how. Like many new to this kind of thing, he had a direction but needed a map. Then one day, on his normal walk up and down Chicago’s North Clark Street in a part of town flooded with strip malls and “BYOB” restaurants, Voong noticed a sign for “Chicago Wushu” on the side of the road and randomly decided to look it up online. There he found an odd coincidence: Daniel Pesina, master of the guan, was in a former life a Mortal Kombat actor. In an industry where creative leads typically stay behind the scenes, in-game actors found cult success in the ‘90s by giving players faces to identify with. And when Mortal Kombat became one of the industry’s most popular fighting games, Pesina grabbed his handful of fame, appearing … [Read more...] about Mortal Kombat’s Johnny Cage, 20 years later
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Today, we’re going to talk about a question that one of our members asked and is really concerned about: Can bad programmers make good games? The way I want to approach this is really simple. I just want to tell you straight up, “YES.” Now, I don’t consider myself a good programmer; I would be embarrassed to show you guys some of my codes. Let me just put it this way: I’ve been a programmer for 10 years. I’m self-taught. I did go to school for a little bit but I don’t think that made a huge impact in what I learned. For a long time I struggled with the feeling that I was not a real developer. That was a big deal for me. How do you call yourself a developer when you’re self-taught? You don’t have a degree and you don’t know where the entry point is. Where is that point at when you can say that you’re officially a developer? How do you know where to find it? Who tells you that you’re a developer? And so I struggled … [Read more...] about Can Bad Programmers Make Great Games?
Noesis Technologies discusses the mandatory characteristics that any modern user interface middleware must offer, and explains how its own solution, NoesisGUI, addresses them. Noesis Technologies is a privately held company founded by a passionate team of developers with solid understanding of real time and games technology. Our vision is to provide efficient tools to help other companies deliver high quality experiences. Having that in mind, we created NoesisGUI, our User Interface middleware thoroughly designed to make the very best games. Find more information about NoesisGUI. Contact Noesis here. The user interface is one of the most important player experiences in a video game, but it is still something that is constantly overlooked or left till the last minute, and always underestimated in terms of the time it takes to build one. So, at the beginning of a project, not enough team resources are assigned to the task, as it seems trivial compared to the 3D workload … [Read more...] about Sponsored: Defining the next generation of user interfaces
This feature originally ran in PC Gamer UK issue 314 and PC Gamer US issue 301. Subscribe to the magazine to get great features like this sent to your door every month, and save money on the cover price. Ooblets is beautiful. It’s billed as a game somewhere between Harvest Moon, Pokémon and Animal Crossing, so a farm builder and a battler where you make a home and build a squad of creatures—the titular ooblets. It’s not playable yet but gifs and screenshots from development keep popping up, offering glimpses of cute critters and bright, happy scenes. I’m too curious to wait for a hands-on so I email Glumberland—the tiny team of Rebecca Cordingley and Ben Wasser—to find out how the game is progressing. To explain how work on the game divides up, Rebecca is the sole programmer and main artist for Ooblets. “95% of what you’re seeing in the game is her work,” says Wasser. His own role is as game designer, writer and … [Read more...] about Growing Ooblets, the gorgeous farm battler
[This story originally ran on on Feb. 27, 2013. We’re republishing it today to provide background on the Wolfenstein franchise prior to the release of Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus .] In the late 1980s, a Texan twenty-something named Scott Miller created a business model that would change the way people bought and sold products across the world. Miller called his masterpiece the Apogee model. Everyone else called it shareware. It made digital sales on the internet stupendously profitable and Miller a millionaire. The model and the man would revolutionize how we use the internet — before most of the world knew what the internet was. Full-time nerds Young Scott Miller was sort of a loaf. In high school in the early 1980s, the nerdy teenager would escape the Texas sun by programming lengthy text adventures in the campus computer lab. Here he met fellow budding designer George Broussard, a teenage boy with a penchant for wearing shorts. The two boys bonded over a mutual … [Read more...] about Apogee: Where Wolfenstein got its start