No Time To Play
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Weekly Links #244


Hello, everyone. I've been blogging furiously for the past week, in addition to coding, and still none of it has been about games. Fortunately I did spot some news of interest, but this is still more of a hiatus than anything.

One trend that stands out is the flurry of activity at Blizzard. New characters in two of their games; mobile, classic and remastered editions of other games. They're all over the news these days, even crowding out the popular battle royale titles -- a remarkable achievement. They're also getting flak over their problem with representation, which is apparently ongoing. But you know how corporations thrive on the "no publicity is bad publicity" rule? It seems to serve them very well indeed.

For game developers, it may be worth pointing out that has been adding new features, and becoming more popular with asset pack creators. Check out the tools aisle these days, too.

And... it sounds like my schedule for today just changed. Oh well, it was getting late in the morning anyway. I leave you with the extended news.

This is more about history than games, but it's too entertaining to pass up. Rock, Paper, Shotgun covers in detail the latest update to Europa Universalis IV, which allows players to play as an imaginary Romanian leader and rewrite the history of Eastern Europe. It would be interesting to know how much of the liberties taken count as artistic license, and how much is a case of insufficient research. Not that I could blame the developers either way.

For the history buffs our there, Vodă is short for Voivode, and the latter is a title, not a surname: it simply meant prince, or ruler, back in the day. Moise (Romanian for Moses) is the surname: that of a long-lasting noble family with claims to the throne, though nowadays it's more commonly a given name. As for Bucharest, while it was indeed founded in 1450 and change, it's 50-60 Km north of Giurgiu, a much smaller city on the Danube. That said, the first unification of Romanian provinces did happen, except it was in 1597 or so, under Mihai Viteazul, or Michael III the Brave for English speakers. Who in turn was heir to a whole other noble family, lasting all the way to the modernization of Romania centuries later. And while Michael Voivode didn't exactly get to kill a Sultan, he did bloody the nose of the most famous Ottoman general of his era. And with a much smaller army at that, thanks to the ingenious guerrilla tactics that served Romanians so well throughout history.

All in all, it's good to see game developers go off the beaten path in the search for historical inspiration. A thing to watch for in the future, perhaps.

Open Game Art user GraveCat points me at their RPG in development named Krasten. It deserves a place here not because it uses my pixel art, but because it looks so damn cool for a game that's 90% text based. And it's just one of many examples. This is how much you can do with little more than icons, writing and line art. Oh, and a sprinkling of color on top. Think about that when you decide what your next game should look like.

Can't tell you what the game plays like because at this point it's just a series of screenshots. But it's worth watching where it goes.

That's it for today. See you!