Sunday, 16 February 2014

Valve's Steam Dev Days talks in video

Back in late December I blogged about the Valve Steam Dev Days conference. With the conference now completed it appears Valve has made available, in video, all 28 talks. I have embedded one by Michael Abrash below (which is definitely worth watching if you have any interest in virtual reality whatsover).

For videos of all the other conference talks please see here.

Unity and PS Vita

As of last month Unity (version 4.3) can deploy games to the latest portable Sony game console, the PS Vita. This means that that components such as the motion sensors, the cameras and the dual analog sticks that come with the device will also be accessible for development.

You will need to be a SCE licensed developer for this, you can read more about this here on the Unity site. 

Saturday, 15 February 2014


I have been invited to sit on the Technical Program Committee for INTETAIN 2014, the 6th International Conference on Intelligent Technologies for Interactive Entertainment. This takes place in Chicago, US in July 2014. 

For more information about the conference see its official website here.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

The Omni and the Virtualizer

Many are already proclaiming 2014 the year of VR for gaming technology with Oculus Rift leading the charge on this. Other products are now being developed which fit around the popular headset; two of which are the Omni and the Virtualizer. Both of these in fact address the same problem, that of moving in virtual reality and are, for all intents and purposes, omni-directional treadmills.

The Omni (seen above) is already available for pre-order and is a product of successful crowdfunding via Kickstarter. The Virtualizer on the other hand is demonstrated in the video below, in a demo which places the player in Skyrim with the help of both the aforementioned Rift but also two Wiimotes for interaction.

The potential of both of these devices, despite of course the practical issues associated with their size, is significant so it will be interesting to see how both of these are received.

New console for retrogaming

If you want to avoid emulators and you're looking for a physical console which can play your old NES, SNES and MegaDrive cartridges, all under one box, there is a device soon to be launched which does just that. Called Super Retro Trio, the device is created by Retro-Bit and appears to be available from preordering.

More info about the console here.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Games with Google Glass

If you want to get a taster of what basic games with Google Glass could potentially be like you could check out the video below. 

Google has created these 5 mini games for inspiration to developers and while these are (clearly) very simple they do showcase the potential that is there quite well. It'd be more interesting to see more elaborate efforts at some point of course; hopefully this will come with time.

16 GB OUYA option

The Android-based console now comes on a 16 GB option rather than the standard 8 GB one (I was pleased to see this today, having ran out of storage space on the one I was using yesterday, my only gripe really with what I think is a great piece of hardware).

You can see this here on the official site.

QuadStick controller on Kickstarter

QuadStick is a controller which is now on Kickstarter (and from the looks of it it has met its goal already). What is very different for this controller is that it is intended towards quadriplegics, as can be seen in the video below with somebody playing the last Call of Duty game on a PS3 with the device.

More information on the device and this very worthwhile project here.

Broken Sword 5

As this was made available only a couple of days ago for the iOS platform (it has been available already for Windows, Mac, Linux and PS Vita) I thought it would warrant a mention; the crowd-funded Broken Sword 5 is the new installment of the very popular adventure series created by Revolution Software. Whilst the series is know for its characters and story as well, its main characteristic, which is very evident in the new installment too, are the very high quality 2D hand-drawn graphics (this can be seen in the pic below).

More information about the game here.

Friday, 7 February 2014

FPS Creator Reloaded and the Oculus Rift

FPS Creator Reloaded, a new game engine I have blogged about recently, has now added Oculus Rift support. This is a welcome move and while FPS Creator Reloaded is not the first game engine that does this it is still great to see more support for the emerging VR headset by tools such as this one.

More info on this here.

Carmack's move from id Software to Oculus Rift

More details on why John Carmack left id Software for Oculus Rift recently; after many years with the company he founded, working on iconic games such as Doom and Quake. This comes from an interview he gave to USA Today recently and it clarifies/sheds light on this a bit more.

You can read about this in detail here.

PATTERNS 2014 conference TPC

I am a member of the Technical Program Committee for the PATTERNS 2014. This is to take place at Venice, Italy (May 25 - 29, 2014). The full name of the event is the Sixth International Conference on Pervasive Patterns and Applications.

More information about the conference here.