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Mailbag
July 13,1999 -- Previous Mailbag

Letters are edited for spelling errors only (occasionally), and may contain profanity. Commentary by Jason "loonyboi" Bergman.

I can feel the love, can't you?

From: Tom "Epstein" McLeod
Subject: Just feedback

I wanted to say that as far as I'm concerned, Loonyboi is now 100% a part of Blue's. The first few weeks were a little odd; "oh, it's the loonygames guy updating Blue's page." But now, he is, to me, a bona fide member of the Blue team. The Tiny Print™ had set him well on his way, but the defining moment for me is when he referred to Messiah as "Shiny's eschatological third person game." And I had thought his college education wouldn't be useful to him in his new job.

Of course, there's also the "we kid because we love guys, honest" update, which you just might never live down, Loony.

It would be cool to have MrCoffee do a guest mailbag compilation sometime, though. I miss that guy, and I don't even know if he really exists, or is just some alternate personality of Blue's. Be sure and tell Gramma Blue I say hi, too.

By the way, this article as nothing to do with the site, but the headline is "Bighearted Big Blue," and of course, it made me think of you, Blue. It's really about IBM and new custom chip manufacturing processes, but who even cares about that:

http://www.wired.com/news/news/news/technology/story/20662.html

Great work as usual guys...
Tom "Epstein" McLeod

You're right, I'll never live that "we love guys" thing as long as I live...if not from you merciless readers, then certainly from my girlfriend who was amused to no end by that. :)

As for Mr. Coffee, I assure you that he is indeed a tangible human being. To the best of my knowledge, the only alternate personalities of Blue's are Vladimir Humbert (who's responsible for the shameless puns, and occaisional pop culture references) and Alex Turgidson (who's responsible for the odd typo, or outlandish outburst). Oh, and then there's Jack Torrence - but we don't like to talk about that one.

Regarding that Messiah post...

From: theAntiELVIS
Subject: It's about snails?

>>Shiny's eschatological third person game

I thought it had to do with angels or something?
:-)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
theAntiELVIS

No, that would be escargotological. :)

Speaking of Messiah...

From: Jonny Z
Subject: Messiah...you mean that old game?

I don't know if I'm the only one who feels this way... but I've been looking forward to messiah since it wasn't even really known... when it was an afterthought while visiting shiny for MDK patches....Now... there's so much hype, so many screenshots and so many previews and movies, it feels like I've already played it. It just feels old and there's not even a demo out.

Dead_Cow

Messiah feels old because they started p1mping their technology the second it was conceieved (I remember reading a preview of the game after it had only been in production for a few weeks!). It was good for Shiny at the time, because it got them lots of press (remember when Dave Perry made a small comment about patenting that technology? Jeez...what a stink that caused) but here we are, and now it's starting to get old. Hopefully they'll finish the game already so we won't have to keep listening to how good a game it'll be when it's done.

No power!

From: Myrddin
Subject: July 8 OOTB

"I really hate to picture either Jason or myself trying to find amusement in a power-free environment"
-- Blue

You would do just fine. You'd go down the stairs, meet up, and start playing some Tetris head to head, or trade a few Pokemons. :) Really Blue, after Loony's article last week (which reminds me... Loony, UPDATE MORE! I'm undergoing withdrawal!) it's reprehensible that you should still think yourself tied to an AC socket for amusement.

By the way, I really did try to figure out what FPS had the first female lead, but I honestly can't find it. I'm pretty sure I got the other two answers to the contest correct when I mailed in my answer last week. Sigh.

I'd like winning it a second time. ;)

Myrddin

Actually, I lost power briefly this morning, and it wasn't particularly fun...sure, I could play all the Pokemon I wanted, but I discovered much to my horror that I don't have a single telephone that doesn't require an AC socket to work (I was actually on the phone when my power went out).


From: Benjamin Black
Subject: RE: OOTB

If the power does go out, I'm sure you can find something to do. After all, you do have a wife.
--
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Benjamin Black Per ardua ad alta

Right you are, Benjamin. He does have a wife, and from what I've heard she's a smart one: they keep a deck of cards on hand in case the lights go out.


From: Jonathan C. Forster
Subject: smug

(I really hate to picture either Jason or myself trying to find amusement in a power-free environment).

Yeah, I feel pretty smug having learnt how to play the flute. Now during thunderstorms (a pretty regular occurance in July and August around here) I can rest assured I won't get bored. Frustrated maybe, but bored, never.

-jonathan

Maybe id doesn't have any health insurance?

From: Wray Sparling
Subject: id problems?

Hey Blue,

Is it just me, or is it kind of alarming how often people are leaving id Software? Is the work just too intense or what?

I believe the first departure I was around to see (just got Internet in '97) was American McGee. Then Barrett Alexander, Brian Hook, and now Brandon James (pardon me if I've missed someone). I guess what's puzzling is that, to most of us (us being the gamers), a job at id Software is a dream. It's obviously hard for us to understand why someone would want to quit a dream.

Maybe we're just putting too much pressure on id to release THE best game time and time again...and it's starting to hurt them. Maybe with the release of Q3A, id should hold some sort of Q&A so that hopefully the problem could be found and, with any luck, solved.

-Wray

P.S. If you're ever talkin to Carmack, I'm sure I could learn how to make levels with some training...oh wait, there I go dreaming again...


From: lappy
Subject: Leaving id

Hey Blue,

What's with people leaving id? 2 major personalitys in the last month! Is this somehow due to John's my way or the highway attitude (when it's done) or are we seeing a major force in the pc gaming ind. begining to crumble?

Lap.

Your guess is as good as ours.

You've just got to love these Linux geeks.

From: Joe Indierock
Subject: Microsoft

This is interesting...

Microsoft's own version of GeoCities, homepages.msn.com runs off Apache

Studs?

From: Peter Bogh
Subject: Watchmen

btw,

BOTH of you are complete freakin STUDS for Watchmen and Moore references. Pimping that book and author on your page directly contributes to the promoting of All Things Worthwhile in The World. You've heard that Terry Gilliam toyed with the idea of a Watchmen movie, haven't yeh? I think it fell through...

Just wanted to let you in on my pain.

Try V for Vendetta!

PB
Hatchet

I don't know if we're studs per se, but we definitely know our geek literature. ;)

Regarding the ill-fated Watchmen movie: Gilliam and Moore sat down with the intent of squeezing it into a reasonably sized movie, and the conclusion they came to is that it simply wasn't possible. They toyed with the idea of doing it as a massive mini-series on HBO, but it never materialized (the budget for such a project would have to be massive...Titanic massive).

As for V for Vendetta, it's quite possibly the single best graphic novel ever written. It also stands a much better chance of being made into a film, as the Watchowski brothers (who brought you Bound and the Matrix) are currently working on a treatment for it. Of course, if you ask me it'd make a much better play than a movie...but hey, that's just me.


RIP the Quake Community?

From: Peter Lomax
Subject: I worked on Generations - Please read

Hi,

My name is Hawkmoon and I was a mapper for the Quake2 conversion "Generations." I know you're a very busy man so I`ll be as brief as I can.

You inferred in your news item (Re: SOG [Blue-4:20 AM EDT] ) that Generations was illegal.

Please understand my position of now being labelled a party to illegal activity.

I have tremendous respect for both your unbiased news reporting skills and id Softwares' ability to consistently provide excellent open-ended 3d game engines. But just because id Software says something is illegal doesn't make it so!

My understanding of Lee'Mons position in removing Generations was more one of buckling under id's pressure and also not leaving himself exposed to malicious (if misguided) treatment from people who believe id can do no wrong.

This decision was taken unilaterely by Lee'Mon and had no bearing on how the rest of the team felt. We didn't let the genie out of the bottle (I refer to SOG`s open letter). It was released a long time ago and has furthered id's kudos ever since. It is also unfortunate that only a few people have grasped the true effect of id Software demanding the removal of Generations. I now disbelieve id's light-hearted rebuttal of their own restrictive EULA (in respect of calming peoples' fears about property issues).

Very,very few maps,conversions,enhancements etc fit the tight parameters that id has suddenly decided to declare. The old Quake "community" has now definately gone, never to return, and I will miss it tremendously.

Thank you for your time

Peter 'Hawkmoon' Lomax

Class struggles.

From: Geoff Gasior
Subject: CLASSic deathmatch

From last week's mailbag in reference to classes in Q3A.

"Funny how id says that it isn't workable in a deathmatch environment. That's funny, last time I checked it works pretty freekin good in Team Fortress Classic Half Life."

Funny how Team Fortress Classic is almost exclusively a team and objective based muiltiplayer mod. I believe what id is referring to when it defines deathmatch would be a free for all or one on one setting where there are no teams or objectives other than scoring frags. Ever try playing Team Fortress or any other class-based mods in vanilla deathmatch? It really isn't all that workable, there isn't much balance. Sure player classes work great for a mod like team fortress where teamplay is encouraged and there are objectives beyond killing everything in sight, but how much fun would it be to pit a Scout against a Heavy Weapons Guy on Q3Test2??

Quite simply, for pure deathmatch, player classes don't work out all that well. The only way I see id coming up with a workable solution to the player class issue is perhaps them including classes only for teamplay or
ctf rather than for pure deathmatch.

Geoff Gasior


From: Dave Raftery
Subject: with kindest regards

(in reference to a Mailbag entry)

To Brad Diermann, WAKE UP! in said it wasnt workable in a *deathmatch* environment. A deathmatch environment meaning, you're on your own. You can't be a wimpy little Scout-like character and just have someone with some oomph backing you up. Its just not gonna happen in deathmatch sorry. You're talking about a team game. Entirely different thing.And if you didnt like Quake3 in the first place, why you so offended? Go play Unreal or some other lame piece of eye candy.

Oh, and loony made the comment everyone thought Unreal was vaporware at a stage. I still think they should have held it off a little longer, to fix the multiplayer mode.

- DaveR

Heaven (or Time Warner) help us all.

From: Kris Hall
Subject: Hell.com, Heaven.com

Didnt know if you knew this alreayd...I had visited Hell.com many times for a while now...trying to figure out what the "hell" it is..sorry pun intended ;) But I have also visited Heaven.com... which there isnt...we someone owns the domain but there is nothing there...however it was VERY interesting to find out that the domain for Heaven.com is owned by Time-Warner...keep up the good work man!

Krish Hall
Founder/Producer, Creative Management
Riot Software

Ye Gods! (More on the Tiny Print™.)

From: Maagic
Subject: Teeny Print™

Blue, I see references to the Teeny Print™ in the mailbag from time to time, but I can't seem to find this section on your website. Can you please post a link to it? Thanks! You Rule!
--
Maagic
aka Bryan Foster

I guess I could...but wouldn't that take the mystique out of it? Hunt around...you'll find it. I promise.

Geek fighter 2+ß-1.0000³.

From: SSTC
Subject: the guy that said something about pi in the mail

He only has to 50000, i have to 32 000 000.

Yeah? Well, I own pi on DVD. So there.

I played through the game for that??

From: dragonlord
Subject: Kingpin ending bit the big one

I just finished Kingpin on the hardest difficulty, Real and I must say that game is now on my "one of the worst endings, leaving much to be desired" list, along with Trespasser. My gawd am I glad I only got the game for $34 instead of $45! Just thought you may want to hear an opinion.

Jason

It can't be as bad as some games I've played through...back on the NES, SMS and Atari systems (not to mention the others before and around the same time), it was commonplace to simply have GAME OVER displayed after you won the game. How silly was that?

Of course, Metroid may have one of the coolest endings of all time. :)

Gotta love his dedication.

From: nin
Subject: please?

Could we PLEASE just have a new contest? After two weeks, it's getting old...

pleasepleaseplease?

Oh, what the hey. Just for you, now...here you go.

 

 

 

 

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