Archive for August, 2010

XBL Price Changing as of November 1st

August 30th, 2010

Unfortunately Major Nelson has just announced a new pricing scheme for Xbox Live. You can see the new priceing below. As bad as this is, I’m going to be super optimistic and suggest that this may allow massive improvements to XBL. What those could be I can’t say but hopefully they’ll bring us better features than twitter and facebook.
XBL pricing

8 years of THX. Ah Bummer. Bungie.net locked our accounts.

August 27th, 2010

The Hushed Casket was founded on B.net on 8/28/2002. Them's Halo 1 days people! And we're only a few days away from our EIGHTH year of existence. Wow. 8+ years of HALO.

The memories of 4-boxen lanning during college multiple nights a week...when we should have been doing homework...at apartments and in university basements...with nicknames like "The Chapel", "The Radon Room", "Sesame Street", and "The Lair"...until we just couldn't stay awake any longer:

That, my friends, was a hardcore LAN party.

Remember challenging other established chapters on Bungie.net to CTF on Blood Gulch LANs...only to find out that we were, like, 12 years older than the kids that were talking all that smack on that internet forum...and seeing their mothers drop them off at "The Chapel" front door...and hearing some kid with the gamertag "Yuck Fou" walk in a college dude's apartment and declare that he was the "greastest sniper ever" and immediately ask for the host to turn on "Ghosts in Battle Creek".

We actually let the "Black Dog Squadron" run amok in one of our most sacred gaming spaces. I mean, check out this kid's shirt! (That was Hawgdaddy's room, by the way):

And then we friggen had delicious cakes make to celebrate our victory over those young kids who were probably enrolled in the area middle-school. Ok. 3-4-8 was a group of college kids from Auburn, but I mean, it was Aw-barn. Cow lovers and stuff:

J-DOGG was a J-PUPP back then, but he sure new his way around the Wild Turkey.

Ah the memories from the early days of The Hushed Casket. And since then, we've had many more great memories. Disavowed reports he's planning a HALOween LAN so we'll probably bump the Halo: Reach LAN back a few weeks into October to get everyone together. I mean, it was only a few years ago that we help a 16-man Halo 3 over XBOX Live...THROUGH HIS FRIGGEN CELL PHONE data connection.

Yeah, Mintz even ordered pizza while we continued to game THROUGH DISAVOWED'S FRIGGEN CELL PHONE data connection. Sorry AT&T.

No doubt the next LAN will be another great time to add to our cache of memories from thousands and thousands of dollars hours of gaming THX has put into gaming Halo 1, H2, H3, and ODST.

And now Reach.

Man, back in 2002, we didn't have YouTube or Facebook or Twitter. Now we do. We can follow Reach development blogs from a smartphone app. We've got Google Alerts emailing us the latest stories about Reach. We're following Bungie.net RSS feeds and their social networking outlets for the latest news on Reach.

And that's where just about every Hushed Casket member has been bitten.

When you log into Bungie.net with your Windows Live ID you'll be greeted with the following message: "This login is temporarily not available. Please choose another." You'll be lead to page asking you to create a Bungie.net profile.

The word "temporarily" implies hope, however I'm afraid we may not have any hope of getting our old Bungie.net usernames back.

This new account creation page can be quite confusing as you can't navigate to anywhere else on the website while logged in with your Windows Live ID. The only way you can get out of this screen is to sign out of your Windows Live ID account or create a brand new user account on Bungie.net. And most users hit with this screen do not understand that their account is not in good standing at Bungie.net any longer. Most people think that there's an issue with the Windows Live ID system or Bungie's website is undergoing maintenance.

To me, this seems counterproductive to, what I assume is, the reason why Bungie would "auto-delete" our B.net accounts for inactivity. I mean, my account has been inactive for many months as I haven't posted any content on their website in quite a while. But why not allow me to reclaim my "rapture" username...even now as I try to get somewhat active again on Bungie.net? For one, I want to check out my new Halo PC flair.

But if I create another account, I'll be disassociated with my old content and, hey, I'm not going to promise that I won't spend 6-12 months of time not logging into Bungie.net. So, Bungie would have yet another account of mine that would have to be deactivated.

Whatever the reason for not allowing us to reclaim our old accounts, I'm bummed. It feels like a little piece of a virtual legacy has been taken away from THX.

For what it is worth, I've seen some time throughout the last couple of weeks trying to find a post on Bungie.net that explains what has happened to our accounts. And as the Reach launch gets closer and closer, I can only assume others will be a little perturbed to find that they can't access Bungie.net like they used to. They'll be looking for an explanation.

Finally I found something: "If you've neglected to sign in to Bungie.net for a significant time period (was it something we said?) and you're being asked to create a new account, please note that accounts that remain inactive for more than one year are purged from our database. You'll have to gather your Windows Live ID information and reregister."

Yes, I'd like to "reregister" my username but no it wasn't anything you said. It was where you said it. We didn't need to sign in to our B.net account to read your news or see your screenshots. You've got Halo Reach marketed clear across the internet through different channels. And we had to move our community away from the Seventh Column group system because we needed to be able to post pictures, videos, and better organize LANs.

And I tried to reregister and we'd like to have our usernames back.

I mean, we are trying to do that thing that Halo 3 mentioned a time or two: RETURN. MC returned to the Hushed Casket. That's where we first saw him. That's why we are the Hushed Casket. Now we want to RETURN; return back to Bungie.net to pick up where we left off.

So, what is a man to do?

Guilt Sawnose?

Maybe we could get a hold of his car like we did Slayer's?

The coolest Halo Reach live action video yet: "Deliver Hope".

August 27th, 2010

8 years of THX. Ah Bummer. Bungie.net locked our accounts.

August 27th, 2010

The Hushed Casket was founded on B.net on 8/28/2002. Them's Halo 1 days people! And we're only a few days away from our EIGHTH year of existence. Wow. 8+ years of HALO.

The memories of 4-boxen lanning during college multiple nights a week...when we should have been doing homework...at apartments and in university basements...with nicknames like "The Chapel", "The Radon Room", "Sesame Street", and "The Lair"...until we just couldn't stay awake any longer:

That, my friends, was a hardcore LAN party.

Remember challenging other established chapters on Bungie.net to CTF on Blood Gulch LANs...only to find out that we were, like, 12 years older than the kids that were talking all that smack on that internet forum...and seeing their mothers drop them off at "The Chapel" front door...and hearing some kid with the gamertag "Yuck Fou" walk in a college dude's apartment and declare that he was the "greastest sniper ever" and immediately ask for the host to turn on "Ghosts in Battle Creek".

We actually let the "Black Dog Squadron" run amok in one of our most sacred gaming spaces. I mean, check out this kid's shirt! (That was Hawgdaddy's room, by the way):

And then we friggen had delicious cakes make to celebrate our victory over those young kids who were probably enrolled in the area middle-school. Ok. 3-4-8 was a group of college kids from Auburn, but I mean, it was Aw-barn. Cow lovers and stuff:

J-DOGG was a J-PUPP back then, but he sure new his way around the Wild Turkey.

Ah the memories from the early days of The Hushed Casket. And since then, we've had many more great memories. Disavowed reports he's planning a HALOween LAN so we'll probably bump the Halo: Reach LAN back a few weeks into October to get everyone together. I mean, it was only a few years ago that we help a 16-man Halo 3 over XBOX Live...THROUGH HIS FRIGGEN CELL PHONE data connection.

Yeah, Mintz even ordered pizza while we continued to game THROUGH DISAVOWED'S FRIGGEN CELL PHONE data connection. Sorry AT&T.

No doubt the next LAN will be another great time to add to our cache of memories from thousands and thousands of dollars hours of gaming THX has put into gaming Halo 1, H2, H3, and ODST.

And now Reach.

Man, back in 2002, we didn't have YouTube or Facebook or Twitter. Now we do. We can follow Reach development blogs from a smartphone app. We've got Google Alerts emailing us the latest stories about Reach. We're following Bungie.net RSS feeds and their social networking outlets for the latest news on Reach.

And that's where just about every Hushed Casket member has been bitten.

When you log into Bungie.net with your Windows Live ID you'll be greeted with the following message: "This login is temporarily not available. Please choose another." You'll be lead to page asking you to create a Bungie.net profile.

The word "temporarily" implies hope, however I'm afraid we may not have any hope of getting our old Bungie.net usernames back.

This new account creation page can be quite confusing as you can't navigate to anywhere else on the website while logged in with your Windows Live ID. The only way you can get out of this screen is to sign out of your Windows Live ID account or create a brand new user account on Bungie.net. And most users hit with this screen do not understand that their account is not in good standing at Bungie.net any longer. Most people think that there's an issue with the Windows Live ID system or Bungie's website is undergoing maintenance.

To me, this seems counterproductive to, what I assume is, the reason why Bungie would "auto-delete" our B.net accounts for inactivity. I mean, my account has been inactive for many months as I haven't posted any content on their website in quite a while. But why not allow me to reclaim my "rapture" username...even now as I try to get somewhat active again on Bungie.net? For one, I want to check out my new Halo PC flair.

But if I create another account, I'll be disassociated with my old content and, hey, I'm not going to promise that I won't spend 6-12 months of time not logging into Bungie.net. So, Bungie would have yet another account of mine that would have to be deactivated.

Whatever the reason for not allowing us to reclaim our old accounts, I'm bummed. It feels like a little piece of a virtual legacy has been taken away from THX.

For what it is worth, I've seen some time throughout the last couple of weeks trying to find a post on Bungie.net that explains what has happened to our accounts. And as the Reach launch gets closer and closer, I can only assume others will be a little perturbed to find that they can't access Bungie.net like they used to. They'll be looking for an explanation.

Finally I found something: "If you've neglected to sign in to Bungie.net for a significant time period (was it something we said?) and you're being asked to create a new account, please note that accounts that remain inactive for more than one year are purged from our database. You'll have to gather your Windows Live ID information and reregister."

Yes, I'd like to "reregister" my username but no it wasn't anything you said. It was where you said it. We didn't need to sign in to our B.net account to read your news or see your screenshots. You've got Halo Reach marketed clear across the internet through different channels. And we had to move our community away from the Seventh Column group system because we needed to be able to post pictures, videos, and better organize LANs.

And I tried to reregister and we'd like to have our usernames back.

I mean, we are trying to do that thing that Halo 3 mentioned a time or two: RETURN. MC returned to the Hushed Casket. That's where we first saw him. That's why we are the Hushed Casket. Now we want to RETURN; return back to Bungie.net to pick up where we left off.

So, what is a man to do?

Guilt Sawnose?

Maybe we could get a hold of his car like we did Slayer's?

The coolest Halo Reach live action video yet: “Deliver Hope”.

August 27th, 2010

Why Buying Used Games Isn’t Cheating

August 26th, 2010

Nothing to do with Bungie directly, but I did write a couple of blog posts about the recent discussion on the interwebz in general (and at Penny Arcade in specific) about the used game market, spurred by comments made by THQ's Cory Ledesma earlier this week.

Firefight gameplay. Airstrikes will be in Reach. Assault on The Cage.

August 22nd, 2010

The popular gamemode from ODST will be in Reach. I'm looking for to it.

This video is a Forge map called "The Cage" with the assault gametype.

Another Firefight video in a new map.

Firefight gameplay. Airstrikes will be in Reach. Assault on The Cage.

August 22nd, 2010

The popular gamemode from ODST will be in Reach. I'm looking for to it.

This video is a Forge map called "The Cage" with the assault gametype.

Another Firefight video in a new map.

Community Jam Night

August 21st, 2010

After the Jam Night we had on Thursday, we might as well try to get a few more in before school starts up! I’m looking at Friday the 27th at 7 Pacific, and we can keep it going for about two and a half hours. I’ve collected some funny stuff for the comedy portions of the show. So drop by the Jam Night Thread to let me know if you’re coming.

Video Leaked. Halo Reach maps: Boardwalk, Countdown, and Glacier Gameplay. #halo #reach

August 20th, 2010

Video Leaked. Halo Reach maps: Boardwalk, Countdown, and Glacier Gameplay. #halo #reach

August 20th, 2010

More Halo: Reach multiplayer videos. Pinnacle. Zealot.

August 17th, 2010

The famous Halo 2 map known as Ascension returns in Halo: Reach as "Pinnacle". Again this is another near exact remake of a classic map.

"Zealot" is a map with characteristics resembling Midship. However, this map isn't intended to be a remake of Midship.

Previously released: Ivory Tower remake called "Reflection":

Remember Reach marketing. Halo Reach live action trailer "Patrol"

August 17th, 2010

A marketing website for Halo Reach has gone live at http://rememberreach.com. The follow video was posted and is now offline, but available on YouTube.

More Halo: Reach multiplayer videos. Pinnacle. Zealot.

August 17th, 2010

The famous Halo 2 map known as Ascension returns in Halo: Reach as "Pinnacle". Again this is another near exact remake of a classic map.

"Zealot" is a map with characteristics resembling Midship. However, this map isn't intended to be a remake of Midship.

Previously released: Ivory Tower remake called "Reflection":

Remember Reach marketing. Halo Reach live action trailer “Patrol”

August 17th, 2010

A marketing website for Halo Reach has gone live at http://rememberreach.com. The follow video was posted and is now offline, but available on YouTube.

Reach multiplayer footage. Map: Reflection. Brings back memories.

August 14th, 2010

This map is called Reflection. Just a few seconds into the video, you'll notice an old Halo 2 friend. This map is a remake of Ivory Tower and it is gloriously lit. It's a gorgeous-looking map and the geometry closely relects that of Ivory Tower. And the sound effects are also noticeably improved, even in a YouTube-quality media.

It looks like gameplay strategy will gravitate toward that of the old Halo 2 map. Controlling the rockets, locking down the sniper rifle perch, and keeping the high ground on all areas of the map.

Reach multiplayer footage. Map: Reflection. Brings back memories.

August 14th, 2010

This map is called Reflection. Just a few seconds into the video, you'll notice an old Halo 2 friend. This map is a remake of Ivory Tower and it is gloriously lit. It's a gorgeous-looking map and the geometry closely relects that of Ivory Tower. And the sound effects are also noticeably improved, even in a YouTube-quality media.

It looks like gameplay strategy will gravitate toward that of the old Halo 2 map. Controlling the rockets, locking down the sniper rifle perch, and keeping the high ground on all areas of the map.

Seven Questions With Bungie’s Max Dyckhoff

August 13th, 2010

max_dyckhoff_bungie copy Bungie AI programmer Max Dyckhoff last month mentioned a long-standing bug in Halo's driving code he'd found and eliminated. He was later kind enough to go into a bit more detail about how Halo's AI figures out how to handle driving and riding in vehicles.

Q: You're one of several active community members who went on to actually work at Bungie. How many Halo games have you worked on now, and what were your primary contributions to each?

A: I started at Bungie at the beginning of production on Halo 3, where I worked with Damian Isla on the AI systems. I spent some time adding a few AI features for ODST as well, such as Firefight, before moving on to Reach, where I have again been working on the AI team. For Reach I've added a bunch of great things like new flying behaviors, better vehicle driving, Elite combat, and so on. The AI team is typically very small, just 2-3 for most of Reach, but we get a lot done.

 Click here for the complete text.

Podtacular 233: Forge World and Reach Campaign Impressions

August 9th, 2010

Download | Shownotes
Last week, we talked about Forge 2.0 and Forge World that was announced at Comic Con. This week, we get your opinions on what was released. A campaign trailer for Reach also got released, showing off more of the beauty of the Reach game engine. JVB and CapnKrunk join us to lighten up discussions with their Bean Burritos. Enjoy.

Around The Ring Episode 19 – Starcraft II

August 8th, 2010

Around The Ring: Episode 19Download
Well a little over a decade later, this show has finally come out! Also Starcraft II showed up. Sorry for the horrible delay, but as usual blame Dust Storm. However the wait was worth it, as we have a much nicer setup now! The show has it’s own feed, and with it’s own page possibly coming soon. This show took two takes, as the first take failed…really really hard. I still was able to salvage some funny bloopers from it, so it wasn’t a total waste. Note: Porta-potty != TARDIS. There’s a little wind noise, and some noise with me fiddling with my headset at certain points, but it’s not too bad. I cleaned the worst of it out. Other than that it’s up to the usual audio standard. I also officially introduce the new theme song! Credits can be found in the comments tag of the .mp3 file, and if it happens, the show page. You can view the album art at full size by opening the image.