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Archive for Mark Mackay

Why I don’t like consoles

Posted on 9th Apr 2009 at 14:19 by Mark Mackay with 42 comments

Mark Mackay
I should probably start by saying that I’ve owned a few consoles in my time. My first was an Atari 2600, followed by a Sega Master System with built-in Alex Kidd. I’ve owned a Saturn, a Gamegear, a Dreamcast, an N64, a Gamecube, a Gameboy, a Gameboy Advance, several PlayStations and a PlayStation 2.

So what changed? The short answer is, I got a PC, but since I have about 400 words to write so may as well elaborate a little. When I was 18, I finally saved enough cash up to get ripped off by a local PC builder that barely had a clue what he was doing and charged people for the privilege of slapping together PCs.

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I hope PC gaming graphics have plateaued

Posted on 26th Mar 2009 at 12:14 by Mark Mackay with 48 comments

Mark Mackay
During October of last year, in an interview with CVG, Valve’s vice president of marketing, Doug Lombardi stated that he believes PC gaming graphics are close to being as good as they’ll get.

Lombardi told CVG that he believes that ‘graphics have started to top-out. We've got really great-looking games but what we want are more intelligent, more visceral games and the multi-core processors are going to be the way that we get there on PC.’

Some of you might feel that this is nonsense; others might feel that it’s true but you wish it wasn’t because you want to be dazzled by graphical feats of unimaginable excellence. Personally, not only do I believe that Lombardi’s statement holds a good deal of truth but I also actually hope that he’s right.

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Addictions on the go: Puzzle Quest

Posted on 20th Mar 2009 at 11:11 by Mark Mackay with 6 comments

Mark Mackay
A few weeks ago I blogged about Fieldrunners on the iPhone. Not only is Fieldrunners an awesome game by any standard, it’s also the first game I’ve ever been truly addicted to on a mobile phone, which I see as a big step forward for gaming.

Today, I’m writing about the second game I’ve been addicted to on my iPhone, Puzzle Quest which is essentially an RPG crossed with Bejewelled.

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On Crafting Wars

Posted on 12th Mar 2009 at 15:03 by Mark Mackay with 12 comments

Mark Mackay
Ever since my first MMORPG, Asheron’s Call 2, I’ve had a deep fondness for the genre. AC 2 was closed some years ago after it lost too many subscribers due to developers (initially Microsoft and then Turbine) making a pigs ear of the code, causing the servers to become unstable and unreliable.

If I was ever in love with a game it was AC 2 so naturally I was gutted when it closed down. I'm no graphics whore but I think the way an MMO looks is very important and to my eye AC 2 looked nothing short of incredible.

Since then I’ve tried practically every MMO out there and none of them have come close to the feeling created by AC 2 in terms of gameplay, visual appeal or the immersive feeling of the game world.

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Free Quake III multiplayer in your browser

Posted on 5th Mar 2009 at 11:01 by Mark Mackay with 15 comments

Mark Mackay
My first ever online gaming experience was round my cousin’s house in Scotland playing Quake II on this 3DFX Voodoo 2-based rig. I was utterly besotted by the immense feeling of satisfaction felt when killing another player that was in a totally different part of the world. I loved the thought of another geek from a different country sitting in front of his CRT monitor shouting ‘OMG WTF HAX?!!’.

Whenever I used to visit my cousin’s house we'd pretend to go to bed - so as to avoid getting a hard time from my Aunt or Uncle - and then silently creep our way towards the PC, fire it up and play Quake II multiplayer till the small hours of the morning with nothing but Iron Bru and adrenaline to keep us going. How he managed to maintain his masterfully Jedi-like aim with a Railgun even when pumped full of caffeine, I’ll never know.

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Fieldrunners - Addictions on the go

Posted on 26th Feb 2009 at 11:54 by Mark Mackay with 6 comments

Mark Mackay
Back in the days of early Nokia mobile phones such as the 3210, there was Snake. And it was good. Snake was the closest thing to a worthwhile game on a mobile in the universe as we knew it. Much like many other early arcade games, Snake’s biggest boon was the bragging rights it gave you over your friends when you got a higher score than them…

Years passed by, several sucky revisions of Snake were made, but nothing ever really came close to being a game that you actually wanted to play when you could be doing other things such as sewing or badger spotting.

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Introducing The Singularity

Posted on 19th Feb 2009 at 19:14 by Mark Mackay with 8 comments

Mark Mackay
I couldn’t decide how best to start my blog so I though I’d talk about the difficulty of sitting down, cup of tea in hand, staring at a blank Word document and wondering what the hell to talk about. It’s a tricky business for an inexperienced blogger such as my self. Fortunately however, using that tricky situation to my advantage has provided me with an acceptably entertaining opening paragraph. Happy days.

Onto introductions; my name is Mark Mackay (pronounced McEye if you're wondering) and I’ve been enjoying writing for Custom PC since June 2008 and now have been further blessed with the opportunity to do so for bit-tech. Prior to writing for CPC I was a PC Engineer for Vadim Computers, a high-end bespoke PC manufactures who have since ceased trading.

So what to blog about? Writing my first feature - which is on artificial intelligence - I was introduced to an imagination-capturing concept known as The Singularity. I found the subject so interesting; I thought I’d share it.

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Custom PC Issue 125

Custom PC Issue 125

Our latest issue is bursting with premium PC goodness, as we enter the land of dream PCs, full of expert customisation and modding, as well as gorgeous water-cooling loops.

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