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Classic Games (Games)

Pac-Man's Ghost Behavior Algorithms 194

An anonymous reader writes "This article has a very interesting description of the algorithms behind the ghosts in Pac-Man. I had no idea about most of this information, but that's probably because it's difficult to study the ghosts when I die every 30 seconds. Quoting: 'The ghosts are always in one of three possible modes: Chase, Scatter, or Frightened. The "normal" mode with the ghosts pursuing Pac-Man is Chase, and this is the one that they spend most of their time in. While in Chase mode, all of the ghosts use Pac-Man's position as a factor in selecting their target tile, though it is more significant to some ghosts than others. In Scatter mode, each ghost has a fixed target tile, each of which is located just outside a different corner of the maze. This causes the four ghosts to disperse to the corners whenever they are in this mode. Frightened mode is unique because the ghosts do not have a specific target tile while in this mode. Instead, they pseudorandomly decide which turns to make at every intersection.'"
Education

200 Students Admit Cheating After Professor's Online Rant 693

Over 200 University of Central Florida students admitted to cheating on a midterm exam after their professor figured out at least a third of his class had cheated. In a lecture posted on YouTube, Professor Richard Quinn told the students that he had done a statistical analysis of the grades and was using other methods to identify the cheats, but instead of turning the list over to the university authorities he offered the following deal: "I don't want to have to explain to your parents why you didn't graduate, so I went to the Dean and I made a deal. The deal is you can either wait it out and hope that we don't identify you, or you can identify yourself to your lab instructor and you can complete the rest of the course and the grade you get in the course is the grade you earned in the course."
Emulation (Games)

A JavaScript Gameboy Emulator, Detailed In 8 Parts 62

Two9A writes "JavaScript has shed its image of being a limited language, tied to DOM manipulation in a browser; in recent years, new engines and frameworks have given JS a reputation as a language capable of bigger things. Mix this in with the new elements of HTML5, and you have the capacity to emulate a game console or other system, with full graphical output. This series of articles looks in detail at how an emulator is written in JavaScript, using the example of the Gameboy handheld: starting at the CPU, and (as of part 8) running a copy of Tetris."
Games

EVE Online PVP Tournament Streamed Live 101

infinitevalence writes "Every few months the good Viking programmers of the north organize and present one of the most geeky e-sports out there. Thanks to them, for three weekends in a row we get to watch player-controlled spaceships fight it out for accolades and unique in-game items available only to the first, second, and third place winners. This year CCP has all of the content live online and streaming in HD for your viewing pleasure. So find a drink, whip up some snacks, watch the shiny explosions, and listen to the soothing words of player experts as they walk you through the action!"
PC Games (Games)

What Game Devs Should Learn From EVE 270

An anonymous reader passes along this excerpt from Gamesradar about EVE Online's Council of Stellar Management (CSM), a group of elected player representatives that serve to facilitate communications between the developers and the community: "On the last day, the devs announced that after the earlier discussions about improving the CSM’s ability to effect change, the CSM was being raised to the status of its own department within CCP. This is revolutionary; in one swift move, the CSM went from what could be considered a glorified focus group to what CCP considers to be a 'stakeholder' in the company, given equal consideration with every other department in requesting development time for a project. That means the CSM — and the entire playerbase it represents — has as much influence on development projects as Marketing, Accounting, Publicity and all the other teams outside of the development team. This is, of course, the stated intention. But has any developer gone to such lengths for its fans?"
Robotics

Lego Robot Solves Bigger and Harder Rubik's Cubes 63

kkleiner writes "It was only two months ago that we saw Mike Dobson's Cube Stormer Lego robot that could solve any 3x3 Rubik's cube in less than 12 seconds. You would think that there was only one person in the world crazy enough and talented enough to pull this off, but now we have found someone else that is just as amazing. The latest Rubik's cube-solving Lego monstrosity is called the MultiCuber, and although it's constructed out of nothing but Mindstorms components and a laptop, it can solve 2×2, 3×3, 4×4, and 5×5 cubes all in the same build! As if that weren't enough, a larger version solves the dreaded 6×6 Rubik's. We discovered the MultiCuber when its creator, David Gilday (IAssemble), wrote us an email to brag about its puzzle-solving might. Consider us impressed, sir."

Comment Quick review... (Score 5, Insightful) 106

I have been playing this game for a few weeks now since the closed beta.

I can safely say that the game at this stage is no where near release ready.
Its definitely forced out of beta by some bean counter.

Heaps of bugs, even more then your average EA game.
No trading system. You can send resources but you have to trust the other party to send back what he promised. And you can't trade gold at all.
Graphical glitches galore.
Buttons to buy "power items" with real money everywhere.
The artificial restraints put in place to encourage you to buy power-ups are way to strict.
The ranking system only takes the amount of buildings you have into account. Nothing about army size.
Poor graphics that are not much better then place holders.

Having said all that, the game is still quite fun to play if you are in to this sort of game.
After you have your cities set up, a 15min gaming session twice a day is enough to keep playing.
So its perfect game to play on your lunch break.

If you want to play, don't make the mistake of building a castle in your first city.
You will get ripped apart by a large army within a day if you do.

Classic Games (Games)

OpenTTD 1.0.0 Released 107

Gmer writes "Eming.com reports that OpenTTD, the open source clone of the Microprose game Transport Tycoon Deluxe, has reached a milestone. OpenTTD 1.0.0 has been released 6 years after work started on the first version, with the help of hundreds of contributors and thousands of testers/players. Over 30 language translations are considered complete, and OpenTTD is available for *BSD, Linux, Solaris and Windows. OpenTTD is a business simulation game in which the player is in control of a transport company and can compete against rival companies to make as much profit as possible by transporting passengers and various goods by road, rail, sea or air."
Math

Perelman Urged To Accept $1m Prize 421

krou writes "The Warm Home charity in St. Petersburg, Grigory Perelman's home-town, has urged the math genius and recluse to accept the $1m Millennium Prize for solving the Poincaré conjecture, and donate it to charities. Perelman has refused to accept the award, telling one reporter through the closed door of his flat, 'I have all I want,' and another who managed to call him on his mobile, 'You are disturbing me. I am picking mushrooms.'"
Australia

Anti-Gamer South Australian Attorney General Quits 104

dogbolter writes "South Australian Attorney General, Michael Atkinson, infamous for the banning of R18+ rated games and the censoring of political comment in Australia, has quit. The recent South Australian election provided a massive swing against Atkinson's governing labor party. As a direct result of the South Australian election result, he is standing down. Hopefully someone with half a clue will assume the vacant post and overturn the decision to ban adult oriented computer games."
PC Games (Games)

An Early Look At Civilization V 286

c0mpliant writes "IGN and Gamespot have each released a preview of the recently announced and eagerly awaited Civilization V. Apart from the obvious new hexagon shape of tiles and improved graphics, the articles go on to outline some of the major changes in the game, such as updated AI, new 'flavors' to world leaders, and a potentially game-changing, one-unit-per-tile system. No more will the stack of doom come to your city's doorsteps. Some features which will not be returning are religion and espionage. The removal of these two have sparked a frenzy of discussion on fan-related forums."
Cellphones

New Phone Allows Bosses To Snoop On Staff 143

tad001 writes "The Japanese phone giant KDDI has developed a way to track users' movements in fine detail. It works by analyzing the movement of accelerometers, found in many handsets. Activities such as walking, climbing stairs, or even cleaning can be identified, the researchers say. The company plans to sell the service to clients such as managers, foremen, and employment agencies."
PC Games (Games)

Why Game Developers Should Support OS X and Linux 283

kevind23 writes "Although Mac OS X and Linux have a small (but growing) market share, Jeff from Wolfire Games argues that supporting non-Windows platforms can lead to a huge increase in game sales. Using their popular game Lugaru as an example, he shows how less-popular platforms, or more specifically, their userbase can be a powerful advertising force. This can lead to a dramatic increase in popularity and exposure, which usually means a large boost in overall sales. The short article is an interesting read, especially for those working in game development and sales."

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