Monday, January 28, 2008

masteringMaya: The Fundamentals - Update

It's been awhile. I've actually been busy and lazy at the same time. My father's worship band has taken a break from playing in church while they concentrate on their album. I don't play on the album, so that gives me a break. Time I can take and concentrate on finishing masteringMaya: The Fundamentals.

I've given myself a goal on finishing the content, which (by adding a little pressure), adds a lot of motivation and incentive for me to go through it. I love Maya, but sometimes the temptation to just sit on the couch and play the PS3 is way to great. I'm a gamer afterall. I plan to finish MM:TF before this summer.

I've been spending the last few days on shading the Alien Ship. I finished adding shader glow to the ship.

I hope you like the color choice for the glow ;) !

There's only a few videos before completing the project's Advanced Shader lesson. Then it's on to rigging.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

2007 Biggest Surprises in Gaming

Now that the new year "rush" is passed, it's time to look back at the last year. 2007 was the year of Surprises in the gaming industry. Releases, Lawsuits, Demonstrations, Politicians (finally) siding with the ESRB... It was a very big year.

It's hard to compile every surprising event that happened this year. Even harder to just name one. But just to put some perspective:
  • Nintendo being surprised at their own success
  • The sales and account creation/cancellation rates after the release of WoW: The Burning Crusade
  • Sony's PR dispute with Kotaku
  • PS3 Home and LittleBigPlanet Demonstrations
  • Take-Two FINALLY suing Jack Thompson (although they took it to the backseat later)
  • Paul Eibeler removed as Take-Two CEO
  • Politicians adopting Second Life as a Campaigning Tool
  • Although we always kind of felt it was coming, the Announcement of Starcraft II
  • The Church of England showing the world their greed by 'attempting' legal actions againg Sony/Insomniac Games (Machester Cathedral in Resistance: Fall of Man)
  • The Manhunt 2 ratings rollercoaster and battles
  • Ken Kutaragi's Retirement a Reality
  • The XBox 360's Red Ring of Death Plague and Microsoft's lasting denial and Warranty rollercoaster
  • WiiFit
  • GreenPeace's console ratings in their quaterly "Guide to Greener Electronics"
  • Peter Moore leaving Microsoft
  • The Two PS3 Price Cut... that didn't happen... in a way... but then there was... you know what? Just forget it.
  • The New E3
  • The "media" forced connection of the Virginia Tech Shooter to Video Games
  • A load of games parodying tragic events
  • Jack Thompson sending Gay Porn to a judge;
  • Jack Thompson using libel/defamation and personal attacks toward and Dennis McCauley (editor at;
  • Jack Thompson attempting to sue and (two different lawsuits); and
  • Jack Thompson's disciplinary hearings (at long last)
  • Silicon Knights suing Epic Games for their own licence breach.
  • The Rarity of Wii's after more then 13 months after launch
  • PSP Slim and the revatilized PSP sales
  • Nintendo Firing Employee Blogger
  • The 'milked' Halo 3 Media Barrage... there seriously was too much Halo 3 in the Media
  • Speaking of Halo 3 -> Bungie leaving Microsoft; and
  • Halo 3 used to attract/connect with kids in Church
  • Politicians and attorneys finally realising that, for the ESRB to work, you need to promote it. A lot of influencial figures are starting to side with the ESRB such as Greg Abbott, Glenn Coffee, and more... even Helene Keeley who worked with Jack Thompson on bringing video game legislation to Delaware
  • EA acquiring... buying... possessing... (whichever one fits) BioWare and Pandemic
  • Jeff Gerstmann Fired from GameSpot and the Awakening of the Angry Internet
  • Vivendi buys and merges with Activision
  • Mario Party DS making PC World Magazine's "Most offensive game of 2007" list.
  • Monster Hunter 3's sudden console switch (that even Capcom, outside the development team, didn't know about) - PS3 to Wii
  • Mothers Against Videogame Addiction and Violence ( Hoax
  • The WiiZapper (the plastic Wii Remote and Nunchuck accessory that barely looks like a gun) being the subject of controversy

That's only a fraction of all the things that happened this year. (Maylater add links to source articles if I can find the time.)

Obviously MY personal Biggest Gaming Surprise of 2007is not even close to those. Mine is outside the technical or political scene and more of a personal experience and what was once the reason for me to stick to PC for playing FPS games. That's right, in 2007, I was totally shocked at... (wait for it...)...(it's coming...)... (just a little more...)... Unreal Tournament 3'scontrol scheme for Sixaxis.

I can already here most of you going "WTF???". It's true. FPS Controls on a console NEVER felt so responsive and natural. There are so many little details (like the rotation acceleration to turn quickly) thatresults in a lot of people using the Sixaxis over Mouse & Keyboard, eventhough Mouse and Keyboard are supported.

I definately feel that FPS game developpers should take notes with whatEpic has done. Epic has spent a lot of time developping and tweaking aconsole-specific control scheme and engine that does shrink the linebetween PC and Console FPS, consequently, bringing quality FPS toconsoles and proving that it is possible to PS3 ports THAT DONOT SUCK!!! *stares in EA's direction*