If you can't beat them, be them, apparently. Browser-based MMORPG Aurora Blade is now clutching for driftwood at the center of a whirlpool of controversy after allegedly stealing art assets from MMOs like World of Warcraft, Ragnarok Online, Maple Story, and LaTale. IGG (the game's Western publisher) posted a statement/threat concerning the mess:
"Note: We would like to explain that SkyUnion(IGG) is not responsible for the developing of the game, that is any character, artwork and graphic is developed by another company and this game is HOSTED by IGG."
"Any thread or post [on the Aurora Blade forums] containing information about other games that including screenshots, game info or any other information will be deleted, as its against the forum rules. We will also take actions against members that will repeat breaking the forum rules.Therefore we have to ban members according to the severity. This may lead to a permanent ban from the forum."
See? Nothing to hide.
Also, we totally didn't nab the above comparison pic from Shacknews, and we're never thanking them. Seriously, though. If you tell anyone about that pic, we'll cut you.
Black Mesa, a Source engine recreation of the original Half-Life, has sported an unwavering "in development" status for the past four years. After a while, we just started lumping it in with Duke Nukem Forever, Alan Wake, and the apocalypse as signs that God does exist -- but that He's one hell of a procrastinator. After checking out the latest Black Mesa trailer, though, we're belting out a different tune. Or at least, we're trying. The cascading tidal waves of drool blasting out of our mouths -- fire-hose style -- make it kind of difficult.
Fortunately, the mod will apparently scale the walls of development hell within our feeble lifetimes. According to a post on the official site for the unofficial remake, "the days this mod stays in development are truly numbered. Hang tight, because at long last, it is coming."
If your mouse just isn’t doing it for you anymore, consider this – $44 is all it takes to change your notebook’s boring LCD monitor into a tablet!
Thanks to the Duo Wireless Digital Pen Mouse, all it takes is a clip on sensor and a wireless pen to make the conversion from mouse to touchscreen. Clipping the sensor onto the top of your screen will allow you to doodle all you want, directly on your LCD. Though, at $44 it’s suspected that the resolution might not be up to par with other kits. But if you’re looking for a very cheap alternative (cheaper than some traditional mice), it’s definitely worth checking out.
The exact nature of the impact that video games have on humans is a contentious issue among researchers and any possibility of a consensus seems inconceivable. It is almost like an incessant war between the myriad of video game researchers across the globe with contradictory video game studies being continuously exchanged by them instead of lead.
The founder of the Smith & Jones Centre in Amsterdam - Europe’s very first and sole video game de-addiction clinic - Keith Bakker has downplayed video game addiction, which he believes is immensely exaggerated. Only 10% of all compulsive gamers, according to Bakker, are actually addicted to video games, while the rest are riveted to video games as a direct result of social problems confronting them.
His postulate is remarkable in the sense that it views social isolation to be a cause of compulsive gaming in most cases rather than an effect, as is commonly perceived.
“If I continue to call gaming an addiction it takes away the element of choice these people have,” says Bakker. “It's a complete shift in my thinking and also a shift in the thinking of my clinic and the way it treats these people. In most cases of compulsive gaming, it is not addiction and in that case, the solution lies elsewhere."
Mr. Bakker’s views must have come as a huge disappointment to Hollywood stars, who have been planning to use video game addiction as a pretext for future rehab visits after having expended all other plausible excuses.
Everyone’s favorite (according to sales numbers, at least) smartphone, the iPhone has finally been hacked to run Linux.
The 2.6 kernel only features a bootloader, so if you decide to rock Linux on your iPhone (there are instructions on the Linux on the iPhone blog) you’ll be met with a console that requires a USB connection to access. They’ve also been unable to use the touchscreen, sound, accelerometer and networking functionality of the iPhone.
While admittedly this isn’t a super impressive showing, it’s a great start for the Linux iPhone community. The building blocks have been placed, folks.
If you’re interested in how the whole process plays out, be sure to peep the video!
Adding fuel to the rumor we reported recently that Microsoft is ready to dump the name Live Search for its search engine and redub it "Kumo," ZDNet's Mary-Jo Foley reports today that Microsoft has:
Redirected some search servers to the Kumo.com domain
Registered variations including Kumosearch.com, Kumopics.com, and others
As Foley also points out, the bad news for Live Search just keeps on coming, with the latest being a glitch that fouled up promised huge cashback savings on Black Friday. So, what do you think? Is it time for Microsoft to turn Live Search out to pasture - or is more than a name change in order? Join us after the jump with your prescription for what ails Microsoft's search strategy.
What was once a cult classic has finally hit the big-time – Mozilla’s Firefox web browser (the one that you’re possibly using right now!) has finally broken 20% market share amongst all web browsers. This move dropped Microsoft’s Internet Explorer down to roughly 70%.
Thanks to some data published by Net Applications, we’ve got some exact numbers regarding this matter. Official information for the month of November list Firefox with 20.78% of the market share, up from 19.97% in October. Internet Explorer is now holding only 69.77% of the share, with Apple’s Safari holding a respectable 6.57% and third place. Google’s fancy new flagship browser has been moving fast, hurdling over Opera’s 0.71%, with their own share of 0.83%.
If you’re one of the many that have downloaded, and use Firefox on a regular basis, good for you! I’m sure they’re grateful for the help. If you haven’t given it a whirl yet, there’s never been a better time. It’s a mighty solid platform that’s worthy of your download.
Electronic Arts couldn't have predicted the unprecedented backlash from outraged gamers following Spore's release, or at least not the extent that they would take the anti-DRM crusade. Protests ran the gamut from blasting the title with thousands of negative user reviews on Amazon to not just making the game available on warez sites, but actively encouraging consumers to pirate the title. If you thought it might be awhile before SecuROM saddled another high profile release, think again.
Despite all the recent raucous, Rockstar has decided to implement the DRM scheme on GTA IV for the PC. But before you cry foul and grab the pitchforks and torches, Rockstar says its version will be much more user friendly than the one found on EA's Spore.
Hit the jump to see what makes GTA IV's DRM different than Spore's.
If your graphics card doesn't support DirectX 10 or 10.1, don't worry about it, Microsoft has your back. The resourceful programmers at Redmond are working on a new component called WARP10 (Windows Advanced Rasterization Platform) to be included in Windows 7, which essentially ports DX10 duties to the CPU.
The upshot is that everyone will have access to DX10 eye candy even if the hardware doesn't support it. Minimum requirements for WARP10 are the same as they are for Vista - an 800MHz processor and 512MB of RAM. So if you have the hardware to run Windows 7, then in theory, you should be able to enable advanced effects regardless of your videocard.
"Our primary goal during WARP10 development was to produce a rasterizer that met or exceeded all the precision and conformance requirements of the Direct3D 10 and 10.1 specifications," writes Andy Glaister, Principal Development Lead of Microsoft Desktop and Graphics Technologies. "We wanted to do this while achieving a high level or reliability and stability. If this rasterizer was going to be used as a fallback for when hardware was not functioning, it’s important that it worked in all scenarios, configurations and different types of machines."
Hit the jump to find out how WARP10 compares to integrated graphics.
Forget about chocolate, flowers, or diamonds, because the real buying decision come Valentine's Day will be what processor to indulge in. It's no stretch to say the entire tech world will remain infatuated with Intel's Core i7 platform by the time February rolls around, but Intel won't be the only one trying to woo consumers. According to DigiTimes, motherboard manufacturers are busy preparing for a sextuplet of 45nm quad-core AM3-based CPUs from AMD in February.
Phenom II X4 710 (2.6GHz, 6MB L3 cache)
Phenom II X4 720 (2.8GHz, 6MB L3 cache)
Phenom II X4 805 (2.5GHz, 4MB L3 cache)
Phenom II X4 810 (2.6GHz, 4MB L3 cache)
Phenom II X4 910 (2.6GHz, 6MB L3 cache)
Phenom II X4 925 (2.8GHz, 6MB L3 cache)
The same sources that have been whispering sweet-somethings to DigiTimes also say that AMD will follow up it's busy February release schedule with more 45nm CPUs in April, but they won't be Phenom parts. Instead, look for Athlon-branded chips without the shared L3 cache. Additionally, the chip maker plans to release the quad-core Athlon X4 600 family and tri-core Athlon X3 family at the same time. And if you can wait until June, sources say AMD will introduce it's 45nm dual-core Athlon X2 200 series.