Steam – The Saga of Responsibility

Knowing where your responsibilities start and other people’s end can be difficult.


And Steam have shown how difficult it is to find the balance as they have decided not to take responsibility for those placing content on the site.

While morally, some would argue not policing their site as a bad thing, I can see the reasons behind Steam doing this.

DISCLAIMER: I don’t entirely agree with Steam’s decision, while I can see some merits and benefits, there are some drawbacks.

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Baldur’s Gate – What Extra Credits teaches a GM

For those that haven’t seen the Design Club, click the link below; it starts at the first of 5 Episodes of Baldur’s Gate.

Baldur’s Gate – Design Club


It sometimes helps to see how someone pulls together key elements in order to create a whole and Extra Credits has finally done just that.  The Baldur’s Game design club pulls together a variety of their original pieces:

Difference in Scale and Kind

Narrative Mechanics

How to handle Difficulty

Exploration in Games

What I want to look at though is how I am likely to use this 5 Episode series in order to make me a better as a GM.

Note these are purely my opinions.  Another dead hand situation.

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Doom – Textbook in making a player feel a B*****

I never thought I would play Doom and think… “wow deep and intense at the same time!”

This game makes you feel like you can take on the world… if the world was Mars with a bunch of DEMONS on it.

I think that a lot of the way that this game feels good is the way it was designed.


OK, for those who don’t know what I’m on about.  The brief summary of the doom series is portal opens on Mars, Demons spawn out of it, you’re the only guy who can do anything physical… the rest writes itself.

The most recent of the franchise confusingly named Doom… not Doom 4, just Doom drops you in as a cult is tying to sacrifice you… and failing at it.

Everything in this game is Doom to a… well actually it is or parr with the original Doom.

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Quake 4 – Graphics VS. Responsivness

I may be wrong about this but I think my skill has got better due to my graphics card.

OK, this is the situation, I’ve recently upgraded my graphics card and then I decided to put some stain on the system.

I chose my favourite method, Quake 4 on twitch on impossible difficulty… well it originally was.

When I first performed Quake 4 on Impossible difficulty, I was getting killed by the first three enemies constantly.

However after my graphics card, I was blitzing it, killed the first 7 and then moved on to the next room (where I ended up getting killed);  But I got further in 30 minutes recently than I did in 2 hours… and that was not using Quicksave Spamming.

However, it wasn’t just this game I’ve seen the effect for, for two or three other games I was literally beating them hands down.

I have two interesting theories for this…

  1. I played superHOT in between.
  2. The graphic’s card responsiveness.

I’m going to be honest, the second one seems far fetched… however if you think about it, it makes sense.  The stronger the graphics card, the more responsive it is to your actions and the better you respond to it.

I’ve always thought that graphics didn’t matter as much as the art style… however when you want something to respond… well graphics becomes that little more important.

My research into other games… is going to be that little bit easier.

Psycho-Pass 2 – Hungry Chicken (Spoiler Central)

DO NOT READ IF YOU ARE BEHIND ON PSYCHO PASS 2 AS THERE IS A MAJOR SPOILER.

An interesting thing happened to me today when I wasn’t playing a game.

I was watching the new season of Psycho-Pass when the entire in show population played a game with a chicken on their tablets and PCs.

At the end of the episode it was revealed to all players that they had committed mass murder by removing a holographic overlay that had been placed on a military drone’s camera.

It was an actual shock to the players in the show and the mental health of the players suffered.

But how far off are we really from being those players in the show?

For this blog I’m going spoiler free and I will duplicate this with spoilers later on.

Far Cry 3 was actually the best example of the mind being messed with.   I’ll admit I was completely aware of the final choice at the end of the game and I knew it was coming.

Yet it really did mess with my head even knowing about it.  At the half way point I had an RPG epiphany… if I was in the protagonist’s situation would I want to go back to the life I lived?

The first thing I can clearly remember is when I was using a flame thrower in the destruction of the drug fields.  The power of the flame-thrower made me feel very powerful.

The next one that comes to mind was actually before this, in the escape from the burning building, it then became a car chase with a powerful grenade launcher, taking out car after car.

Finally the flashbacks to who the protagonist was.  He goes from being a jerk with a bunch of jerk friends to becoming a more decisive but dangerous individual.

In the end I found myself pressing both buttons at the same time (I got the “Good Ending” where you chose to leave the island but even that didn’t feel right as I have to ask is what the protagonist would do when back in civilised life after being forced to kill and then growing to like it.

Spec Ops: The Line also really messed with my head in a different way.  It was the final part of the episode that was encapsulated where consequences were revealed.

There were several occasions where I was forced to stop the game as I felt absolute hatred to myself and the protagonist.

The first that put the full breaks on it was the white-phosphorous mortar use.  The idea was to use the mortar to clear out enemy forces, however it was protecting a civilian population and they weren’t afraid to show the full picture and its gory nature.

There is also an element of being used in this game as well, on several occasions we were suggested one thing by the game only for it to be subverted by the characters.

I still need to complete this game but I know there will be more gut punches which I will have to take.

Psycho-Pass 2 – Hungry Chicken

DO NOT READ IF YOU ARE BEHIND ON PSYCHO PASS 2 AS THERE IS A MAJOR SPOILER.

An interesting thing happened to me today when I wasn’t playing a game.

I was watching the new season of Psycho-Pass when the entire in show population played a game with a chicken on their tablets and PCs.

At the end of the episode it was revealed to all players that they had committed mass murder by removing a holographic overlay that had been placed on a military drone’s camera.

It was an actual shock to the players in the show and the mental health of the players suffered.

But how far off are we really from being those players in the show?

For this blog I’m going spoiler free and I will duplicate this with spoilers later on.

Far Cry 3 was actually the best example of the mind being messed with.   I’ll admit I was completely aware of the final choice at the end of the game and I knew it was coming.

Yet it really did mess with my head even knowing about it.  At the half way point I had an RPG epiphany… if I was in the protagonist’s situation would I want to go back to the life I lived?

In the end I found myself pressing both buttons at the same time (I got the “Good Ending” but even that didn’t feel right.

Spec Ops: The Line also really messed with my head in a different way.  It was the final part of the episode that was encapsulated where consequences were revealed.

There were several occasions where I was forced to stop the game as I felt absolute hatred to myself and the protagonist.

When things stop getting fun…

I’m beginning to regret starting a twitch channel.  Not because of negative publicity but because its no longer fun.

I started playing to have fun and show people a side of me that no-one did… a honorable notion but misplaced.

The truth is it went downhill recently.


There is a buzz about playing a solo game with spectators however if you constantly go to play on twitch and you are constantly the only person, its effectively a video recorder, twitch is meant to be community not solo play.

I guess the deciding factor was Roll-play charity event.  I went back to watching these people have fun and felt part of the community watching, a few days later I played by stream and… it didn’t feel right being the only person on stream.

I also like to play games for long periods but I have to cap myself to 2-3 hours as I split them into decent length highlights, transfer them to youtube and then edit the tags and descriptions.  Its actually stopping me from letting go after a long day.

At the same time, my life has been chewed up, I work 6 days a week sometimes and when I do I lose 3 evenings to streaming and 2-3 hours of editing and checking, when you put in the effort, it makes things less fun when you have nothing to show for it… and I’ve been told that the only way to make it successful is to play games I don’t necessarily like.  If jumping through hoops and playing games you don’t want to play is part of the twitch streaming lifestyle then I want no further part of it…

I’m giving myself a week to see how I feel over the matter and I’ll make a decision then… in the meantime, I’ll probably keep going, see how I feel afterwards.

I’ll probably get back to what I enjoy and that is watching what I love.


This is staying though… it doesn’t take up much of my time, I can write this whenever I want and I do like writing about experiences.