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Browser version of ‘Escape Goat’ opens play to Linux and Mac users

”browser-version-of-escape-goat-opens-play-to-linux-and-mac-users”

An HTML5 port of MagicalTimeBean’s Escape Goat is now available to play in web browsers. A full version of the game is available through September 9th, and a demo version of the game will remain after.

Escape Goat is already available on the PC and Xbox Live Indie Games, but the browser version gives Linux and Mac users their first chance to play. It includes a built-in level creator, which also allows players to share levels, and two user-created worlds with over 40 new rooms.

Escape Goat is a puzzle platformer. Players take on the role of an imprisoned goat who manipulates and destroys its environment with the help of a mousy friend. The game launched in the Xbox Live Marketplace in November of 2011, followed by a PC release in June of this year. You can play the game in Firefox, Chrome, or Internet Explorer by visiting playescapegoat.com.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMXqy-ZP-AA?rel=0]

Source: theverge.com

”linux-game-gaming-gamer-news” title="Linux

Play Open Source Turn-Based Multiplayer Board Games With TripleA

At the end of the day, you might like to sit back and relax with some classic old gaming. With so many possible games for your system to choose from, which one should you play? Which ones will actually be worth your valuable time? Well, would a game that requires you to strategize and comes with many maps sound worth your time?

About TripleA

TripleA is the answer for you! If you’ve ever heard of Risk, it is a strategy board game in which you have to conquer the entire world, one region at a time. TripleA is very similar to Risk, but it also includes a few extras as well. Oh, and did I mention that it’s cross-platform and open source?
Installation

Installation of TripleA should be fairly easy. You can get the necessary files from here for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. Some Linux users may even be able to find TripleA in their repositories. Ubuntu users will need to add the PlayDeb repository until the release of Ubuntu 12.04, where TripleA will then be included in the default repositories.

The choice between the stable and “unstable” (in reality just beta) is up to you, but I can say I’ve had no problems with the “unstable” builds so far. Please note, however, that you’ll need to have the Java runtime installed on your system for TripleA to work.

Running The Game

Launching TripleA will bring you to a welcome screen where you have many options to choose from. Not only can you start a single player game, you can also host or connect to multiplayer sessions, find online games in a lobby server, download new maps, and start a saved game.

When you click on “Start Local Game”, you can first pick out a map that you’d like to play on. Then, you’ll be presented with 7 nationalities, where you must choose which are human-controlled and which are controlled by the computer as well as their difficulty level. Every nationality is fighting for its own survival, so choosing to be in control of two nationalities if you’re playing by yourself might not be as fun.

Gameplay

Gameplay is pretty quick, as you’ll see when you start. It’s likely that some nations will have their turns before yours, so you’ll need to wait a minute or two before it’s actually your turn.

From there, you can build factories and machinery, raise armies, and more. You can also move units into combat or move them to a better location for the time being.

Combat is pretty interesting because it’s slightly evolved from simply rolling dice. Most of the complexity of battle can be seen in the screenshot above. Even though the concept still revolves around rolling dice, TripleA does a good job of making it a little more visually interesting.

There are a few other features here and there that are pretty cool to see. For example, TripleA, unlike Risk, introduces the idea of capital cities as well.

Conclusion

TripleA is a fun game that you could spend hours playing if you’re up against a good opponent. Even better, there are some pretty impressive maps in existence for TripleA, including an entire solar system with multiple planets, ready for you to conquer them. So really, what excuse do you have to not play this game?

What do you think about TripleA? Are there any suggestions you’d like to add? Let us know in the comments!

Aussie War Journo Takes Aim at FPS Game Changer

You’ve probably not heard of Tony Maniaty. A pioneering Australian journalist, he has turned his hand to the world of game development with an interesting new title: Warco. While most FPS games see you armed with a variety of guns, Warco’s protagonist’s sole weapon is a video camera. Rather than kill, you must shoot footage and edit it together to make a story.

Designed to illustrate the dangers of reporting from war zones, Warco (which stands for War Correspondent if you hadn’t already worked it out) attempts to show prospective journalists how to balance chasing the story with keeping themselves alive.

“There’s no way of replacing the ultimate experience of actually going into the ‘hot zone’, watching soldiers at war and even being shot at yourself,” says Maniaty. “It’s more than just staying alive. If you wanted that all you’d have to do is move further back to safety, but that isn’t going to help you get the story on film.”

Designed by Brisbane based studio Defiant Development, Maniaty insists that Warco is more than just another war game. “If people want fantasy, they won’t find it in Warco,” he insists. “This is about war in the real world, which is terrifying.” The game is not yet available but plans to release it are in motion. In the meantime, check out the footage.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQlkYY88wLM&w=460&h=264]

Sure, it’s no Crysis or MW3, but as a game it really takes things in a different direction. We’ll be keeping an eye on this one.

Video Games: DC Universe Online going free to play NEXT MONTH!

The DC Universe MMO is planning to go Free to play next month after being running for just 9 months. Hit the jump to find out more info.

f the proposition of buying DC Universe Online and then paying a monthly fee has been keeping you away from Sony Online Entertainment’s MMO, prepare to enter Gotham City next month. In October, DC Universe Online goes free to play.

Both PlayStation 3 and PC players will be able to download and play the game for free. Three tiered levels will act as the game’s revenue source from there along with in-game microtransactions. Here’s the official breakdown from SOE.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4hD4G8HlW8o&w=460&h=264]

Both PlayStation 3 and PC players will be able to download and play the game for free. Three tiered levels will act as the game’s revenue source from there along with in-game microtransactions. Here’s the official breakdown from SOE.

FREE
New players will now have access to the current gameplay in DC Universe Online (including Gotham City, Metropolis, and all current raids and alerts), with the ability to create two characters, join a league and many other benefits. Free level players will be able to purchase downloadable game packs/updates, additional character slots, powers and more through microtransactions.

Premium
Any player who has spent at least $5 (including former paid subscribers and new players who have purchased $5 of in-game items) will qualify for the Premium access level. Premium level players will have more benefits available to them than the Free level player, including additional character slots, additional inventory slots, and higher cash limits. Downloadable adventure packs, additional character slots, and more can be purchased in-game.

Legendary
Maximum features and benefits are included at this level. Loaded with enhanced additional features, Legendary access will be available for a $14.99 monthly fee and includes all DLC packs at no cost, more than 15 character slots, more than 80 inventory slots, the ability to form unrestricted-sized leagues, and many other benefits.
If you’ve already paid for a PC lifetime subscription or a PS3 plan, that deal still stands when this switch happens in late October. This event also marks the end of DCUO’s auto-renew feature. In the past, the game would automatically resubscribe you when your subscription lapsed. That’s over now – a result of the more than 40 percent of people who quit EverQuest II and complained about the auto-renew in a SOE survey.

“We decided ‘Let’s listen to them’,” said Lorin Jameson, SOE executive producer. “I don’t know about you, but my credit card statement every month is this amalgam of s*** of MMOs that I’m too lazy to cancel. What we want is to offer people a way to not worry about that.”

The announcement of the free to play move comes just seven months after SOE released DC Universe Online. SOE wouldn’t go into the exact number of subscribers currently playing the game, but Jameson said numbers are up since the move to megaservers and that free to play was not in response to subscriber numbers.

“In terms of ‘Is it a result in a drop in subs’ – absolutely not,” he said. “This is the right business model. If I can be honest, the game ended up costing a lot more than we thought it would, and this was our preferred business model from day one.”

If you’re a stickler for fair play, SOE said you don’t have to worry about microtransactions breaking the game. Super-powerful items such as Superman’s raid suit will not be purchasable and experience won’t be for sale in October. The experience will be similar to Free Realms’ free to play model, SOE said, and you can expect to see it in games that are out now and future releases.

“We are really seeing the benefits of free to play, and we’re really liking it,” Jameson said. “Needless to say we’re paying close attention to it and maybe looking to make some surprise moves a little later.”

Who Are Your Opponents in Online Gaming?

Online gaming against real opponents is a popular pastime. Do you, or have you ever, played such games? Do you play against people you know in real life or random strangers? What is that like?

In “Words With Strangers,” Meg Wolitzer describes her experiences playing online Scrabble, gaming etiquette and the emotions interacting with fellow games can bring about:

My frequent online Scrabble opponent of the last few days has sent me a message saying he’s sorry, but he can’t play right now. He has a “stomach bug/malaria,” he writes. Such are the considerations when your opponent lives in Ghana.

… Much has been written about the soullessness of today’s “Village of the Damned” isolates who sit at their laptops round the clock, playing various online games alone or with strangers. But when I log on to the Internet Scrabble Club, via isc.ro, I want not just the no-nonsense feel of playing Scrabble with someone I can’t see and will never meet, but also, strangely, the connection.

There are two kinds of players there: those who “chat,” and those who, when the game begins, shoot out an automated message that says so-and-so “does not receive tells when playing.” Though I don’t play Scrabble to make new friends, whenever I see this message I always feel slightly insulted. Come on, “scrabblerocks121,” aren’t I worthy of the most minimal chat?

… Without these signifiers of politeness, I might feel that I’m playing against not the girl from Pinkberry, or a retired teacher, or a down-on-his-luck country-western singer, but instead some humanoid without a soul. Sometimes, of course, my opponent does receive “tells,” but is soon revealed to be horrible: “nice use of an anagrammer, u cheater,” my opponent sneers after I make a bingo.

And then a message comes up that so-and-so “has put you in their no-play list.” Again I feel slapped. But I just can’t bring myself to reply, “oh right, pal, INSTEAD was such an insanely hard bingo for me to make — btw, i could have also made DETAINS or STAINED or SAINTED, etc. — u think i needed an anagrammer??? Boo hoo, u sore loser, stay home and cry into your Vegemite.”

But so vivid is my image of my opponent and so intense our interaction that I do what my parents always told me to do if a stranger starts up with you: just walk away. My face is hot as I shut my laptop. I almost feel as if I’ve slammed a door on Ted Bundy.

Students: Tell us how Ms. Wolitzer’s experiences with online gaming compare to your own. Are there additional unwritten “rules” in your gaming communities? How does online gaming compare to playing against friends or family members who are in the same room as you, using a video game system and television or board games? Which do you prefer, or like Ms. Wolitzer, does your preference change? Why?

Students 13 and Older are invited to comment below. Please use only your first name. For privacy policy reasons, we will not publish student comments that include a last name.

Teachers: Here are Part 1 and Part 2 of our 2010 question-and-answer feature with James Paul Gee, an expert on how video games fit within an overall theory of learning and literacy.

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