Sep 30, 2006

A rather handy e-book...

Ever wanted to optimize your Windows XP running PC? Ever wanted to achieve everlasting rock-stardom? Actually bend it like Beckham? Reach the net's end? Save some money, that will allow you to survive another day? Get to visit Lenin's mausoleum?

Of course you do. You always did. Unfortunately all I have to offer is another PDF. 62 pages from the not-so-aptly named Windows XP Annoyances for Geeks (the service pack 2 covering edition) focusing on what gamers worldwide crave for: maximizing hardware performance without spending a thing or sacrificing loved ones to weird deities.

Get this freebie of a PDF e-book by clicking here (or by right-clicking and saving-as).

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Oblivion essentials, the ZX Spectrum emulation e-book, Quad-core processing eye-candy, Wik

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The end of the Internet.

Right here.

Sep 29, 2006

Visiting Day paying PC and PSP a visit...

Horrible post title aside, the great news is that the (almost) final version of Mike Bithell's excellent, very free, mainly intended for the Sony PSP and totally indie game Visiting Day has just been released. Get it here and be a happy punter.

For the few of you infidels, that don't already know what this is all about, I suggest having a look at a certain older post of mine. Oh, and Visiting Day is playable on PSP (both offline and online), PC and Mac.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Hand-picked free games, Legend of Zelda: the PDF, a Ninja Loves Pirate interview

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Sep 28, 2006

Mutant Chronicles: Warzone. Updates and freebies.

(Disclaimer: This is a silly post, part of the imagined massively-link-to-places online compo, where only gnomes are allowed to participate)

(A plea: Please ignore the disclaimer above. Thank you.)

Warzone, the sci-fi squad-based wargame of the Mutant Chronicles universe and my fondly remembered entry point to the world of miniature addiction & pain, has been rather dead for quite some time. Painfully dead. Excelsior's brave efforts didn't save it, brilliant Italian fan-sites didn't help and neither did the extensive cataloguing of the game's all three editions at Boardgamegeek.

All though is not lost. Not yet.

Matt Forbeck, one of the few -the happy few- people that originally shaped the (English version) Mutant Chronicles, keeps providing us with crucial info. Oh, and apparently an excellent and quite unpublished Warzone related PDF: Mutant Memories. Info highlights include:

-The new Mutant Chronicles RPG.
-The aptly named Mutant Chronicles Movie.
-The last Warzone miniatures stash (well, stockist).

Not bad. Quite reassuring actually. Who knows... Warzone edition 4 might someday live...

Related @ Gnome's Lair: a nice wargaming freebie, RPG sex, Space Hulk 2nd. edition

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Mr. Alan Wake you are so very impressive, I'm really impressed. Really.

Forget the PS3, forget the Xbox 360 and forget the whole naked girls playing Wii Tennis thing. Just save enough money to buy a multi-core processor, a good graphics card and a copy of Alan Wake for your PC. It is going to be, quite frankly, awesome.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Wik and the Fable of Souls, Team Fortress 2 vid, lots of free games

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Sep 26, 2006

Broken Sword 4: The Angel of Death Walkthrough

Walkthroughs really, but who's paying attention to the little things? Anyway. While I'm trying to write a little something on Broken Sword 4 (for Adventure Lantern) and while my own walkthrough of the game is coming along nicely but slowly, you could have a look at:

a) the unfinished Just Adventure walkthrough, by clicking here,

b) Revolution's very own walkthrough, excellently presented as a collection of (not very subtle) hints, by wisely clicking here.

Related @ Gnome's Lair
: BS4 the demo, those fecking text adventures, Knightsquire review

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SEGA Mega Drive: A retroinspection

Look at what Jakanden found: the complete SEGA Mega Drive retroinspection, exactly as it was published in the single recent issue of Retro Gamer I managed to miss, only of course in pure web-friendly (and quite inexpensive) html format.

Just click here and read this excellent piece on the most spectacularly successful SEGA console ever.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: love SEGA Dreamcast, the Atari 2600 GUI, Game & Watch online

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Sep 25, 2006

Museum Monday #31

Monday. Busy Monday. Busy as hell Monday, but also one featuring the 31st addition to the pointlessly celebrated Museum Monday series. An addition exclusively dealing with legendary publisher Origin (of Lord British fame), thus linking to the aptly named Origin Museum. Just follow the link and relive the glory days of the PC. The lovingly remembered era of Ultima and Wing Commander. The era before DOOM; even before Wolfenstein 3D. The era of still impressive game boxes , as the following picture should illustrate.

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Sep 24, 2006

The Sandman (disguised as a nice free pdf)

The Sandman. Written and conceived by the amazing Neil Gaiman. Illustrated by an unbelievable variety of hugely talented people like Sam Keith, the late Malcom Jones III, Mike Dringenberg and (imagine that) Milo Manara.

Intriguing, right? Have a look for yourselves dears. Try the first issue of Sandman volume 1 in (very free) PDF format. Preferably by clicking here.

You'll get to read a dark-surreal-gothic-paranoid story, and experience an artistically excellent graphic novel. For more info click here and here.

Pre-download peek, right here:

"A wizard attempting to capture Death to bargain for eternal life traps her younger brother Dream instead. Fearful for his safety, the wizard kept him imprisoned in a glass bottle for decades. After his escape, Dream, also known as Morpheus, goes on a quest for his lost objects of power. On the way, Morpheus encounters Lucifer and demons from Hell, the Justice League, and John Constantine, the Hellblazer. This book also includes the story "The Sound of Her Wings" which introduces us to the pragmatic and perky goth girl, Death."
Related @ Gnome's Lair: The Legend of Zelda comic (PDF), Adrian Smith's Art, Knights of the Dinner Table Anime

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Sep 23, 2006

The amazing Zelda PDF.

Gnomes never die (almost never anyway) and Infendo has found something rather impressive: a 196-page 200Mb PDF Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past comic. Or is it a graphic novel? Doesn't really matter now, does it?

Download it here. Read it while waiting for the Wii and stop acting like Nintendo groupies. It's plain silly.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Ninja Loves Pirate: The Interview, The Art of Computer Game Design (PDF), Peoples' Mario

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Sep 20, 2006

Adventure Lantern the September issue

A tad late, mostly lacking any noticeable contributions by gnomes (well, beside some work on the "News" bit), but still an amazingly gnomes-friendly and adventure-gaming rich issue, the September version of the Adventure Lantern PDF-zine is a great read.

Its 101 pages include interviews on such forthcoming games as The Exchange Student, Diamonds in the Rough and Awaken, 10 reviews of new, older or even freeware games, news, articles and a Winter Rose walkthrough. Top stuff, really.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: more September gaming mags, Wik and the Fable of Souls, Naughty text adventures

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Sep 18, 2006

A rather extreme Lego Star Wars 2 (II) walkthrough-guide-thingy.

The Elderly meta-reviewed it (it apparently being Lego Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy), I thoroughly enjoyed its predecessor and now the generally nice MyCheats website tells us to go faq ourselves and provides with an utterly impressive superguide-walkthrough combo, that covers everything from general tips and secrets, to lists of unlockables and bonus levels.

Get impressed (and Star Wars guided) here.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: GTA: Lego City, Darth Vader & the Lego orchestra, Star Wars in ascii

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Museum Monday #30

Monday. Monday morning actually, but still in the definite retro mood that has plagued me for the past 15 hours. A 6502 mood even, dangerously bordering on a full blown Acorn 8-bit lust. That's why this Museum Monday (number 30, no less) entry is all about the Acorn BBC models: the Electron, Master and Compact. And a bit on stuff like the Archimedes too. Anyway, just visit the brilliant and deviously-named The BBC Lives! website and find out about it yourselves. Mind you, you'll also find a large collection of scans, BBC related software and emulators, an impressive PDF (& html) e-book collection, tons of retro games, FAQs, pictures and more.

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Sep 16, 2006

Decker's Delight Links (16.Sep.06)

Deckers are the hackers of Shadowrun and the tech-wizards of Neuromancer. Totally un-related to this useful (or, so I gather) bit of info, is this new-look and more verbose version of the Decker's Delight link collection. Try to enjoy it.

The Elderly, being the elderly and consequently the rather grumpy people they are, are concerned with in-game advertising. Their audience gets to comment.

Meanwhile, Australians (perhaps even Aussie elderly fans), namely The Sydney Morning Herald, ask if video games are art (and actually try to answer), only to be shot in the leg by the realization that tabletop Roleplaying (not of the fetish kind) is not. That'll show 'em. Just Roll Dice and Kick Ass.

Thankfully, gaming and quite living legend Brian Moriatry gets interviewed by the good folks of Adventure Classic Gaming, and Gamer C discovers the perfect restroom set-up.

As for the history buffs out there, the Decker (well, me actually; a gnome really) would like to propose the excellent A History of Role-Playing by Steve Darlington and a rare glimpse at the skeletal remains of Looney Tunes [courtesy of Urban Retro Lifestyle].

More fun is to be had by watching Jakanden's brilliant find, a Universal Studios Employee video by none other than Tray Parker and Matt Stone. Oh, and by playing the excellent and free remake of F-1 Spirit. At Independent Gaming of course.

Closing surprise links: this, this, this, this and that.

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Sep 14, 2006

And now for something completely elementary...

Prepare thyselves mortals! What follows (Elementary Dating, written and performed by Rowan Atkinson) is the funniest video YouTube has to offer.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Grand Theft Auto in LEGO, Colbert on RPGs, Ninja Loves Pirate: The Interview

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Half-Life Cheats and Walkthrough

Half-Life, nowadays also appearing under the not-so-cute name of Half-Life 1, is one of those rare and excellent games that just won't age. It also is one of those games where a walkthrough or even a cheat would come in handy. Apparently, so would a guide or some hints.

Without further ado then, here's what you've been (probably) looking for:

A Half-Life walkthrough at, and one more at Gamefaqs. Tons of HL cheats, along with more cheats, the brilliant and very recommended UHS Half-Life hints and a nice PlanetHalfLife guide. Oh, and don't forget the IGN Guide either.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Warhammer for Half-Life 2, an early Half-Life promo video, Soldat

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Sep 13, 2006

Midway's very Online and quite Free Arcade Classics

Not much to add really. Midway has gone all socialist and is providing the masses of the Internet with freeware versions of Defender, Robotron 2084, Tapper, Spyhunter and Joust (to name a few). All you have to do, is make sure you've got Shockwave installed (get Shockwave) and visit their great (virtual) arcade.

Relates @ Gnome's Lair: Online MSX emulation, Head over Heels, free C64 games

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Sep 12, 2006

ten gnomish questions / Ninja Loves Pirate

In case you haven't gotten it yet, this is an interview with the team responsible for the forthcoming and slightly previewed Ninja Loves Pirate game. An interview with people who still create games the way the gods of gaming intended. People who also got NLP a nice official site.

1. Ninja Loves Pirate is both original and old-fashioned. How did you come up with the idea for this game?
Patrik Liljecrantz: The idea of ninja loves pirate is a sort of spinn-off of things Emanuel Garnheim and I have been discussing during our years studying together. What actually made us put a game together was the Four elements competition at It had rules requiring ninjas, pirates and zombies, so that gave us the right push. We won the contest btw ;)

2. Are you sure a Pirate can actually (and deeply) love a Ninja?
Patrik Liljecrantz: Yes, they actually can! The bonds of love grow deeper than any ancient disputes.

3. What’s more dangerous? A zombie or a robot?
Patrik Liljecrantz: In a one on one situation I would say the robot (Without underestimating the zombie). Zombies work in packs, that's what makes them dangerous. And the fact that they always seem to be in the right place at the right time. Even though you hide on the roofs, the legless zombies are always waiting for you.

4. Ok. Enough with being weird. NLP has excellent pixel-artsy graphics and a distinctly retro look. What was your inspiration? Why did you choose such a (beautiful) style?
Emanuel Garnheim: Our inspiration was from NES and SNES-games such as Contraand (Super) Metroid, as well as games such as the holy grail of pixel-art, Metal Slug. All these games have beautiful pixel graphics, which suggest more than the pixels that are there and leave some of the art open to interpretation and imagination, a trait that in my opinion lifts pixel-art above modern 3d graphics. This was the main reason, aside from pure nostalgia, that we chose this style for Ninja Loves Pirate

5. Perfect music too. Care to tell us a bit more about it?
Magnus Alm: We work with a really talented musician called Antonio Tublén who also works as a director in Denmark. You should really check out if you want to hear more of his stuff.

The team: Emanuel (concept & pixel artist), Jimmy (designer), Magnus (producer) and Patrik (programmer).

6. How did you manage to fine-tune the gameplay?

Jimmy Öman: I wasn't involved in the demo design, as I am part of the development of the full version taken up by Muskedunder Interactive. As far as game play tuning for the demo though, I think it's safe to say there wasn't much tuning. The demo was made under a lot of time pressure and I think the main goal was to make it playable but not excellent. My work with the full development will make sure the ninja and the pirate are a lot more interesting to play, especially in co-op. I've emphazied their unique features to make them asymmetrical, both in fighting and in other abilities. The enemies and the fights in general will be a lot more fun, with smarter and tougher enemies, f.e. trying to flee when hurt and cannibalize to regain hit points. We will also change the intensity of encounters to follow a dramaturgical curve, thus varying the encounters and the game play. There will also be event fights, where the camera will stop to anticipate an incoming fight. You have to beat whatever goals we set for the player before continuing, giving the events a mini-boss feeling.

7. What do you consider your greatest success in NLP?
Jimmy Öman: For the concept as a whole, I think that would be the achievement to make something great from the seemingly chaotic mix of ninjas, pirates, zombies and robots. It could as well have crashed and burned, but instead it's a success so far, thanks to careful work and talent.

8. When should we expect the full game release? Any ideas for Deluxe, boxed, Xboxed etc versions?
Magnus Alm: The release date of the full game isn’t decided yet, since we are currently discussing with publishers. Also I should mention that the platform of the game isn’t final just yet. As soon as anything is decided and signed, we’ll announce it.

9. Care to reveal some of the team’s future plans?

Magnus Alm:
We are working on two other titles right now, they will be showcased to publishers further on this year. They differ a lot from Ninja Loves Pirate and belong to different game genres. But they remain funny, cute and will be sure to get a smile on your face, just like Ninja Loves Pirate. So, we do have other stuff going right now, but we aren’t ready to announce anything just yet.

10. Thanks a lot and good luck. (not a question really... more of a wish)

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Ninja Loves Pirate, Wik and the Fable of Souls, Donkey Pong

Ah, yes. The Super-Villain thing again...

Not particularly original, but admittedly funny, here's a nice and humble collection of Something Awful's Motivational Posters for Super-Villains. Oh, and for more of them better visit SA itself.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: RPG motivational posters, Star Wars in ascii, Anti-Ads

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Another free mag: Fictional Reality

Yes, more free stuff! For free! Again! What a shock! And this time it's a magazine on wargames, miniatures and RPGs. A 66 pages long PDF magazine to be precise, that likes to call itself Fictional Reality. This issue, the 25th, features two impressive battle reports (Horde and Babylon 5), tons of miniature and game reviews, terrain building advice, a nice Sidewinder: Recoiled RPG scenario and quite a bit of general eye-candy.

Oh, and you can apparently download it right here.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Dungeon Hack: a freeware fantasy wargame, pure RPG sex, Wraith: The Oblivion

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Sep 11, 2006

Museum Monday #29

Monday. And a deadline generating one at that! But as the great Douglas Adams used to put it "I love deadlines, I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by". So... I guess it's a bit of Museum Monday retro gaming blog posting for us here in the lands of the gnomes.

A sort of SEGA 8bit themed Museum Monday actually, as I have the very devious intent of leading you all to an extensive SEGA Master System virtual exhibition. To the SMS Power! hosted Sega 8-bit Museum, to be more precise. A place filled to its virtual roof with everything SMS related: game covers and magazine scans, posters, booklets, a music archive, information on the Master System 3 and the SEGA prototype SMS, catalogues, ads, and of course complete lists featuring every game ever released.

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Sep 9, 2006

Radio Free Retro

I may not know what Jack FM is all about, I may not even know who this Jack guy actually is, but I do know what I like: free web based retro games. Just like the ones Jack FM is kindly offering here. Simply follow the link and relive the days of Asteroids, Donkey Kong, Tetris, Duck Hunt, Frogger, Pac-Man, Pong and Space Invaders. Then watch Week End. It's retro too.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Online MSX emulation, the ZX Spectrum PDF Bible, Love a Dreamcast

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Sep 7, 2006

Those fecking text adventures....

The adventure game, especially in its pure text form, most usually referred to as interactive fiction, has been widely and wildly considered a true gentleman's genre. A chap's even. People (and gnomes) have passionately argued that text adventures are the only games capable of catching a scholar's eye. The sole interactive way of evoking emotion. A step forward in interactive storytelling. Heralds of a new Art form.

Unfortunately the road has not been all rosy. A persistent problem has been the un-artistic ways, in which interactive fiction has always tried to reduce the player's expression. The genre's peculiar definition of obscenity. Its total refusal of accepting the existence of man's (and woman's) only free way to entertain himself (or herself). A consistent, even though admittedly funny, tendency to ignore sex.

Try typing simple words like "fuck", "arse", "shit", "piss" or "wank" in any text adventure you might have currently installed (not that many, huh?) and you'll see what I mean. Better though, visit the brilliant Profanity Adventures site (also a source for the piccies in this post) and have a laugh.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: Sick and disgusting games, the DOOM adventure, Text is -indeed- King

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Sep 6, 2006

Dead Rising: How to murder 60k Zombies.

Aeropause produced this most impressive of Dead Rising video walkthroughs, designed to teach aspiring undead slaughterers, how to swiftly rid their game worlds of enough zombies to earn them the prestigious Zombie Genocide Achievement. Go on. Watch the video. Gooood... Now, try it out yourself. You'll make old mother happy again....

Related @ Gnome's Lair: GTA Lego, Ninja Loves Pirate, Flash for Fun

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