Showing posts from April, 2012

A hoax as old as the hills, you say?

Yep . I've seen that "passport page tearing" nonsense pop up on endless sites over the years, but this is one of the bigger spam runs I've seen related to it. I'm almost certain your passport is safe.

Conference season!

AKA those things I like to complain about. I'll be in London for InfoSec Europe later this month, and I'm currently mapping out the final few con slots for the rest of the year. I have my name down to speak at RootCon 6 in September, where I'll be talking about Advergaming (adverts stuffed into games), and also delving into some of the tricks and tactics used to place as many adverts as possible in front of the gamer, along with some of the security risks and a potted history of adverts in gaming from the 1970's to the present day. Paper summary here . Last year was a lot of fun , and this is one of the few events I enjoy so batten down the hatches and I'll see you in Cebu come September.

There's balls, there's big balls and there's BioBalls

You have to hand it to a marketing department that can come up with something like this . One of the ballsiest marketing ploys I've ever seen...this is how you make monocles pop out and launch themselves into orbit.

Mass Effect Thematic and Structural Fixes: The Extended Cut

Spoilers. Spoilers EVERYWHERE. Here is my money / time no object rejig of Mass Effect 3. Some things to note: I don't mention Starchild (much), Suicide Mission 2.0, choices not reflecting in the third game or the ludicrousness of basing your entire game solution on "Here's a magic space weapon, we don't know what it does or how it'll stop the Reapers and we'll keep drumming this into your head throughout the game because we literally have no sensible solution other than a magical off switch. If we tell you this enough times, hopefully you'll just accept and roll with it. Love, the writers". I already covered lots of those things here , so just assume all of that has been magically replaced - with space magic - by something that makes sense. Also Xzibit memes. And here we go.... Don't place important plot points into optional DLC 1) As it turns out, the exploding relay in the Arrival DLC has caused lots of confusion with regard the ending

Emirates A380: Inflight Wifi

I recently flew on an Emirates A380, which comes with inflight wifi for the entire 7 or 8 hour trip. The cost is $20 for 100MB (about £12). Before anyone freaks out at the "cost", consider that there are hotels in the UK alone that charge £5 for an HOUR of net use (how does that even happen, anyway?) Don't even get me started on those standard "inflight email services" where it costs a small fortune to send a solitary email. The connection was fast and from what I can recall, only went down once and quickly reconnected. They do give you a warning that there may be some countries you fly over where wifi isn't available, but considering we were flying over Iraq with a perfectly fine signal I can't think where this would actually flatline. Having said all of that, 100MB over 7 or 8 hours could still be a stretch for some people, so: 1) Make use of the (realtime) monitor that shows you how much you've used. 2) Skype generated a steady stream o

Putting an IGN writer in your game? What could possibly go wrong?

Oh right. This . This is what could possibly go wrong. I'm not sure if the icing on the cake is where she reveals she hasn't finished the game in question herself, or where she just invents words like a genuine Willy Am Shakespeare ("Babsolutly")? Actually no, calling the fanbase of a game she appears in "entitled whiners" while working for a company whose job it is to review videogames would be the icing on the cake. Eventually the post was simply deleted instead of updated with an apology, which arrived here . Then you have this frankly amazing "I'm closing my blog / no I'm not" emofest here . See Bioware? This is why you don't put people in games who write about games - even if they write things like "Babsolutly". It's telling when one of the most articulate commentaries about the whole end of game fiasco on a gaming site is written by a structural biologist rather than any number of videogame wesite staffers

Game Dev PR Fiasco Roadshow

Mass Effect 3 spoiler warning. Game dev makes ill judged post on forum: Instant demotivational poster in the most unfortunate way imaginable .