Stolen Pixels #236: Breen Interviews Ken

By Shamus Posted Tuesday Oct 19, 2010

Filed under: Column 37 comments

Here is a comic which is all about Call of Duty. And not Minecraft. Heavens no. We’re talking about real games now. Serious games.

Call of Duty. Not Minecraft.


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37 thoughts on “Stolen Pixels #236: Breen Interviews Ken

  1. Groboclown says:

    You may want to post the link with this one.

    [Edit] Or maybe I just looked at this too quickly.

    1. Dragomok says:

      First not setting Spoiler Warning to public, now lack of link!

      I bet that if Minecraft is ever converted to other platforms, it will be much more serious threat for World of Warcraft than any other multiplayer game.

  2. LassLisa says:

    I’m not seeing a link there either. Makes me wonder if Shamus isn’t a little bit distracted…

  3. Daemian Lucifer says:

    That missing link is the product of…err,so many hours spent on making that comic,yeah,thats it.Nothing to do with minecraft,no siree.

  4. SolkaTruesilver says:

    Hum.. Shamus, not that I want to bother you, but have you received my emails?

    1. Shamus says:

      I have not. I was planning on doing a “if you haven’t heard from me by now, then I haven’t heard from you” post this week. I’m actually really alarmed by the number of people who say have emailed me with no response.

      I am beginning to suspect that Thunderbird’s spam filter is a kleptomaniac.

      1. ReluctantDM says:

        I had just assumed that you were too good for us little folk! ;)

      2. SolkaTruesilver says:

        That is strange, I will try to send you from an alternate email adress. Do you think you could just confirm reception on receival?

        Darn, I have been growing white hair because of your spam filter :-P

        1. SolkaTruesilver says:

          Sent a few seconds ago

      3. Mad Flavius says:

        Chalk me up in the “sent an email but don’t think it got through” category, too. Don’t worry about it if you’re busy, though. :)

        In fact, there have been two or three occasions with similar results in the past several weeks. Perhaps Thunderbird is not friends with gmail? I don’t know why that would be, however…

      4. Irridium says:

        Strange. I use Thunderbird and it seems to work just fine.

        Then again I refused to update it, since from what I hear the updates turn it into crap.

        1. Shamus says:

          The address is 10 years old and I was not particularly secretive about it. About 50 spams make it through the adaptive filter and must be manually sorted. Now I’m thinking the AF eats some valid ones as well.

          1. SolkaTruesilver says:

            Well, if you haven’t received it by now, I think I will have to find another way to contact you. Do you have an alternative email you could use?

            If yes, I’ll write down my email address here and you could simply delete it after you wrote it down?

            edit: but it will have to wait for later tonight, leaving the office/computer

            1. SolkaTruesilver says:

              All right. I fully 100% hope you delete this comment once you took note of my email. (also MSN, if you use it)

              remimaloney at internet dot look dot ca

              Again, I hope you would be interested in my proposition. It is sound, AFAIK, and financially viable, and could give us further future opportunities.

              1. SolkaTruesilver says:

                All right, you can delete this.

                Not even interested in giving me a reply, apparently.

          2. Irridium says:

            Its possible. From what I’ve seen the filter is rather hit and miss with stopping spam. Sometimes letting it through, sometimes stopping it, sometimes stopping legitimate emails that you even have in your address book.

            That last one happens to my brother all the time.

  5. BaCoN says:

    I want access to the Combine server. :(

  6. mark says:

    Is there an official (or de-facto) twenty sided server?

  7. toasty_mow says:

    I’d like to point out that I don’t find CoD very serious. :D

  8. Aldowyn says:

    It really does work this way, btw.

    Me: “Hey, come look at this!”

    Other: “… those graphics suck.”

    Me: “That’s not the point! Here, try it!”

    *Other person takes the controls*

    (20 minutes later)

    Other: Now let’s make this a little rounder… fill in the empty spaces…

    Me: You realize it’s been like half an hour..

    Other: There! That was awesome, this game is amazing! … What did you say again?

    Me: Never mind.

    BTW, this is in Minecraft classic. Much different from Alpha, which I have yet to play (or even see much of.)

  9. Steve C says:

    Shamus said:

    Despite the retro graphics it actually needs a reasonably up-to-date machine to run. (I’m not sure what the actual system demands are, but I’ve got a five year old laptop here that can just barely run the game on minimum settings.)

    That’s likely because Minecraft creates (procedurally) a playable area eight times greater than the surface area of the Earth. (Source)

    1. Drexer says:

      It doesn’t create(nor store) it all at the same time, so it ain’t quite that the problem. It still has to keepa lot of thing in its memory and generate and update them quite rapidly specially when moving so that’s the biggest performance hog.

    2. mike says:

      The world is not generated all at once.

      Minecraft is capable of generating a surface area approximately more than eight times the surface of earth.
      “Chunks” of world data are generated as you explore.

      The problem is more likely due to the volume of tirs (three edged polygons) that are needed to process for occlusion, back-face culling, and the fact that Minecraft is not optimized for low end video cards, or software rendering modes.

      That, and the fact that it is not likely very optimized in general, since it is still in active development. No use waisting time making things work faster if you can’t be sure where the bottleneck will be.

      Also, if there is a twenty sided Minecraft server configured, can I suggest the name “Combinecraft” or “Combminecraft”

      Edit: Drexer beat me to it… :-(

      1. Spatticus says:

        I support the name of Combimecraft. Has all the elements and is not only silly but kinda hard to roll off the tongue.

      2. Drexer says:

        Ah, but your answer is so much more elegant. Don’t feel sad.

  10. JohnAdams says:

    And Shamus said Civ V would delay production.

    Have been waiting for Experienced Points to show up on the Escapist for the last week, lol.

  11. Jjkaybomb says:

    With the comment on the bottom of the comic…
    I have a pretty powerful computer. And Minecraft still lags on moderate settings, especially around dawn/dusk and water/lava physics in action.

  12. Kdansky says:

    “Can you make the pixels bigger?”

  13. I should note that with Cataclysm coming, I’m looking forward to your series on WoW beating it out the door …

    1. Sumanai says:

      Will it still have level requirements for crafting?

  14. Gndwyn says:

    Given that Minecraft is the most awesome use of procedural generation in gaming history, I was surprised that you hadn’t talked about it sooner.

    Not surprised to hear you’re addicted like the rest of us.

    I would love to hear you talk about Minecraft with your programmer / designer hat on, what you think about the procedural generation.

    I also think the success of the Alpha build is really interesting: Imagine you had a grand idea for a painting. You make a rough sketch that doesn’t at all capture your vision. You show it some people and they love it. They pass it around. It is hailed as one of the best drawings ever. And you’re thinking, “But it’s not finished yet…It’s supposed to be…”

    1. Deoxy says:

      Given that Minecraft is the most awesome use of procedural generation in gaming history

      Second-most awesome. Dwarf Fortress tops it (and Minecraft clerly gets a LOT of its concepts from Dwarf Fortress – there was a whole thread about that here, recently).

      1. Shamus says:

        Are you really suggesting that a matter of personal taste has been “settled”?


      2. Gndwyn says:

        I’ll grant you that Dwarf Fortress is probably more awesome, (I haven’t played it but the stories of other people’s games are pretty amazing) and I’d also enjoy reading Shamus on procedural generation in DF, but Minecraft is what I’d most like to hear him talk about.

  15. Yonder says:

    Aww, why did Breen have to dismantle the light house? I’m sure it was a nice lighthouse.

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