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Fatal1ty Interview 2012 (167 comments)
Posted by MrE @ 07:30 GMT, 22 February 2012 - iMsg
I have posted an interview with United States of America Fatal1ty over at www.thegamingcyclist.blogspot.com. We talk about whats going on in his life nowadays, quake, esports and esreality. Here is a snippet:
Thresh once said of you (in an ESR interview) ... "Fatal1ty plays a more methodical, running patterns type game, whereas I played a more thinking, strategic style game"... He also spoke about his slower, strategic style of play. Is it possible that such gameplay could withstand the ferociously fluid style most Pro-Gamers employ today? I'll cut to the chase ... do you think you would have beaten Thresh if you were both at the peak of your powers?

JW: I feel I played the game however it needed to be played to win the game. If a certain pattern was 100% effective, why not use it? As gamers got more complex to read and play against, I had to change my game to win the match. The game over the years has changed so much, so no one style is bullet-proof. Playing all the different games I've played, each game had a different way to play them, and if you tried to employ a q3 tactic in PainkilleR, it was impossible to win! I tried it, didn't work. I had to become more aggressive and more fierce with decisions and movement to bring the fight to me. I even had to change to no accel to play the game at optimal settings. As for the match between Thresh and me, we will never know. Thresh was a great player and I much enjoyed watching him when I was 15-16 years old.

Check out the Full Interview! I hope ESR readers enjoy reading it! - MrE
Edited by Nukm at 18:23 GMT, 23 February 2012 - 51656 Hits
The reason we play... (75 comments)
Posted by MrE @ 01:08 BST, 4 April 2009 - iMsg
It appears to me that ESReality is somewhat lacking in the mojo department at present. So, rather than discuss the pro's and con's of something, the first thing I would like to do is talk about the most important part of gaming. That all-important killing blow. I do this because I hope that it will encourage at least one "spectator" to become an ESR writer on a more regular basis.

We've had some WoW/Q3 flaming sessions in the last column, and they were mainly unnecessary. What I want to conjure for you in this column is a memory of magic. I am not a magician, so in order for this to work, I will need you, the reader, to think about the last few years of online gaming. I want to know about a particular moment.

I want to know about that final moment, and quite possibly the ensuing glory (or not as the case may be). I want to know about the moment you have put your finger on the trigger and nailed someone so badly that you've leaped off your seat. Or yelled at the screen. Or closed your eyes and said a silent thank-you to whichever god of gaming you follow.

These are my four, and they are by no means in any particular order.


Battlefield 2. Helicopter Pwnage

I will describe the scene, some of you may have missed this game. The scene is very much covert. Myself and Koogar are DEEP undercover. The action is live and frenetic. The vehicles at our disposal are multifarious. We've arrived at our destination by ditching a very expensive military Jet over a barren piece of rock. We've then slaughtered 3 soldiers in order to steal a jeep. Using this jeep, we've driven to the enemy airstrip, and whilst whistling nonchalantly to ourselves, we've sauntered "casually" along the other side of the hill, until we are ensconced within a hundred meters of a multi-million dollar military helicopter. At this point we've gone flat to the ground and burnt the Jeep. Nothing looks more suspicious than an unoccupied Jeep ticking over on a hill-top beside a highly equipped Military installation.

After about 5 minutes (which was probably 30 seconds if I'm honest), we scuttle forward towards the enormous, armor-plated personnel helicopter (The helicopter that flies really slow, but spews out lots of soldiers). We are as invisible as pebbles on the hill. We don't move to look at Fighter Jets, Boats, or even soldiers shooting each other. We are professionals. I whisper to Koog over Skype that it appears our arrival hasn't attracted attention. He affirms this by standing up, as he tugs on his Silk Cut over the microphone. He runs to the helicopter, using it as a visual cover against approaching soldiers, and sticks a rather chunky pack of explosives to the side of the 'copter.

He runs back to me and lies down and we both hold our breath. This kind of shit doesn't happen every day. You have to understand that what I've just described was thwarted a dozen times, in slightly different ways. A stray bullet, a direct one for that matter. An airstrike. An attack helicopter. The list goes on.

But we are there, lying on a hill, looking at the bulky, metal-plated 'copter, as it fills with soldiers.

Now the next part of this kill is all about finesse. You could explode the 'copter as it takes off, wiping out the occupants, but almost certainly raising a finger of suspicion as to the cause of the "accident". Even better than that, after a few days of trying this particular incision, we realized that the following kill was the sweetest way in which to end enemy lives.

Simply wait. Watch the helicopter take off. Enjoy the pilot's skill. Watch as he bravely negotiates those low hillocks, swooping gallantly towards the ocean beyond. Then, when the moment is right, preferably with the sunset behind them, click the button of the detonator. BOOM!!!!!

Blow the fuckers out of the sky. End them. The enemy hasn't got a clue what hit them. The best bit about this kill is lying silent on the distant hill, finger on the button, undiscovered.


LG scurry after quad, dm6, destruction!

pro-q3dm6. Nice map. Balanced. However, all this ends as soon as the quad lights up. Good teams won't just time the quad on dm6, they'll instinctively know when the other team is about to try and take it.

Getting the quad is usually fraught with a terrifying array of ballistics. So actually getting the quad and living to use it isn't particularly common in matches that mean anything.

So when you time quad to perfection, kill the competition, land on it and run for cover, the satisfaction is usually all-encompassing. But for some, this is where the fun begins.

I should imagine you've all experienced a lighting gun scurry after quad. And this kind of kill hankers back to those particular moments. It has to be all of the above, combined with a frenetic, insane level of accuracy. Add all that to the combined effect of the LG with quad damage and you have the LG scurry.

It goes something like this...

POP! POP! "SCURRY". POP! "STAND STILL" POP! POP! "AWESOME AIM". POP! "STAND AND FIGHT". POP! "SCARY GROUP". POP POP POP! "TEAMMATE". POP. "SRY" POP! POP! POP!

It's the kind of power that has to end. And when it does, if you've done something akin to that described above, you would happily frame your online career with that moment. I play FFA now and then, and people moan about the quad. They're really missing the point.

That kind of shit doesn't happen every day. But when it does, you're generally walking around in circles half an hour later, just trying to get your nerves to calm.


Quad blocked, or "cock blocked"

The reverse of the above. You are waiting, I would say patiently, but this is Q3. In actual fact, you are jinking around like a crazy loon, trying to stay alive AND in sight of the quad spot. You aren't assigned to taking the quad, but still your mission is to END the quad if it lands in the wrong hands. This mission will last approximately 2.3 seconds.

If you succeed, you are no more than a foot-note in your own personal history. But occasionally, when those gaming forces merge, you will create something unique. A Jedi-like ballet of such deadly intent, that the quad guy, staring at you as you approach, gun slowly turning towards you, micrometer by micrometer, is unable to stop the brutal onslaught of your attack.

This won't get written about (except now). You won't be carried aloft by your clan-mates in gratitude. It is something only you really know about. And in certain matches, this will win the game.


Rail, perfect rails

Rails. I used to call myself RailRaptor. I used it because for me, the rail gun embodied Quake 2. It was so destructive, but slow. It required incredible precision, whilst so many faster weapons could be obliterating you.

When Quake 3 came along, I discovered Rocket Arena. One night, a very late late, I was fighting amongst the more refined quake players. As the evening drew on, the skill increased.

I wasn't in my league, but in this instance, I was the last player against 2 enemy. I jumped into the wide-open arena, eschewing the cover of corridors, and braving the inevitable onslaught.

I was very lucky. Both players were a long way away, and were in line of sight, so only one of them could shoot me. I just twitched my rail trigger and blinked. The next thing I knew, everyone on the server was shouting "Woot" "Gz!" "IMBA" "L33T!". I had accidentally railed both players from a ridiculous distance, killing both. Ahhh, happy days "
Edited by xou at 08:43 BST, 4 April 2009 - 29543 Hits
How I learned to love the Shotgun (265 comments)
Posted by MrE @ 21:52 BST, 31 March 2009 - iMsg
When I heard, a few months back, that Quake 3 was making a comeback in the form of some kind of magical mystical browser format. I raised an eyebrow. Out of interest and disbelief.
When I got accepted into the Beta program (by sheer random fluke), just a few weeks ago, I started to get excited.
Quake 3 was a landmark for me. Along with the birth of my kids, the World Trade Centre collapsing, Diana dying, I remember standing on the side of a road in Cheshire, England, reading PC GAMER, looking at screenshots of the blue Quad damage icon. I was more excited about Q3 the first time round than I was about pretty much anything else.
This time round I'm older, wiser and unfortunately more resilient to the delights of life. I booted up Quake Live with a mixture of anticipation and more than a subtle dose of trepidation. Since kicking ass on FFA servers "back in the day" I've gone to pasture. I've been seducted by the all-consuming WoW, and my reflexes have slowly withered. In fact, my enjoyment of gaming has also crumbled.
I went from an insane addict of Q3 to a WoW zombie. There is a distinct difference, as I will now try to explain.


The Q3 addiction I enjoyed in years gone by; it was distinctly rewarding. I would pour blood, sweat and tears into forging what I could from my own genetic shortcomings. I wasn't a god, but by god I was good. I could do shit that would make ME gasp. And it wasn't excellence in comparison to the truly gifted. It was excellence acquired through practice. I was the best I could be. Not great. Not even memorable in the main. But occasionally I would play a game, or make a shot that would rock the server. That shit is scary addictive. It's gaming, and yet the same could be equally compared to sporting achievement. Practice hard and you will make people gasp, even if it is yourself! Q3 was my pinnacle of sporting achievement. It made me sweat (as many of you will understand) and I made it my crowning moment of physical and mental fusion.

WoW on the other hand is rather different. It titillates, it satisfies, and occasionally it will strum your nerve-endings to a peak of exquisite rhapsody. Yet, it's repetitive, requiring stroke after stroke of your "sword" (or wand). It's all about dressing yourself in the finest most attractive items of clothing. It's about exploration, and it's about doing this on your own for months, and then once you're maxxed, doing it in groups. It is mastabatory. I'm not sure if that's a term, and I can't be arsed to look it up.
This is an old and tired kind of WoW bashing, and I don't want to go down that route. What made me write this, after years of absence from ESR, is that Quake Live has stripped my nerve-endings of the atrophy.
I played for a few weeks and found my skill was lacking. So I did what most gamers do, and I bought what I considered to be the best rodent on the market, along with an expensive gaming mat. I should have known, having played "Unmatched" years ago at a competition, that a good mouse and mat aren't going to get you very far. They turned up with cloth mats rolled up in their back pockets. I brought mine in an aluminium tin, it cost a fortune. We were beated something like 200-0.
Anyhow, I bought the Lachesis and a Razor mousemat. That's another story.
I went back to my trusty Logi G5 and Func Mat after a swift and abortive experience with the lachesis. Realising that practice is the only way forward, I've started on the road back to mediocrity.
Whilst doing this, I've experienced feelings of intense competition. My nerves have been frayed to tender strands of jangling nudity! My ageing bones feel alive. I don't profess to be even good at present. I'll maybe win a FFA...which is a claim nearly all ESR readers will be able to match. However, I can claim that whilst I lose quite a lot, I'm back in the game.
:)
Edited by MrE at 21:54 BST, 31 March 2009 - 56339 Hits
Counterstrike Source and Tom Jones. (8 comments)
Posted by MrE @ 23:02 GMT, 9 March 2005 - iMsg
I've been away. In many ways, I'm that guy who had to pick up a boiling cauldron with his bare wrists to get out of the monastery. I've turned my back on the pure and entered a world of painful reality. I don't shave my head, it' s shaving itself as time progresses. But I am wandering a desert. Walking peacefully through a void in nature.

I've been in Counterstrike Source. I've seen Dust in all its glory, and I've seen the inhabitants of that barren place. Ghosts would be less chilling; I thrill at the thought of ghouls and effervescent spirits. What haunts me amidst the textured finery is more real. The world of CS-S is a beautiful place. I can account for sights that have left my chest empty of breath , my face flushed with achievement. Yes, I've become a Counterstrike Gamer. And yes, i've killed a fair few people along the way.

I've even joined a clan, which makes me a charlatan. I promised my wife that clan-life was behind me. To a great degree, it always will be; I'll never sit in the living room of the house, glued to the PC, whilst relatives visit, shouting "QUAD IN TEN!". I'll never again value 20 minutes of being utterly owned by a superior team over a film, or the pub. It was sometimes bad being in the eye of the clan-storm.

Counterstrike Source is now a fully fledged incarnation of the most famous online game in the Western Hemisphere. The only problem with CS-S is that nothing has changed. Improved physics, detailed textures, mapping. All these are nothing, if beside the falling bodies and elegant archways you have the CS-Teen(tm).

Perhaps Quake and Unreal survived the invasion of the "Teen" because both games were quickly eclipsed by CS. Perhaps the science-fiction/fantasy worlds were too far removed from reality for CS-Teen's to understand properly. Or maybe, the world of CS was from day 1 blighted by paranoia and created its own nemesis.

Idiots have occasionally wandered into Quake3, by accident. The main reason they become known to their fellow gamers is an accusation of cheating aimed at a better player. It's rare, and consequently more novel than irritating.

In CS-S, skill is rewarded with accusation. For a lot of the CS-Teen brigade, it's a reflex action, a throwback to the hax0r days of the original CS. Unfortunately, more and more cheaters are entering CS-S, bolstering the paranoia, and nurturing the witch-hunts. Unlike other games which have eliminated illegal access to servers, CS-S was cracked and then taken from behind.

CS-S allows hackers to play alongside paying players. In other online games, the cracked version runs alongside the "real" version and so the two groups don't mix. Normally I wouldn't bridle at the thought of the two groups mixing, but an unfortunate offshoot of this is the effective reduncancy of Valves Banning policy; Yeah, go ahead. Hunt down the haxorz. Problem is they will then login via an illegal copy of CS-S and do the same thing through a different key.

I've been to heaven and hell at the same time. CS-S is truly a wonder to behold. So much beauty, thronging with disease at this early stage in its life. I've played several clan matches, all of which have ended with question marks hanging over the heads of the losers (be that ourselves or the opposition).

I will continue to play CS-S whilst Quake 4 and other promising games stay in development. I have no love and no affiliation with the scene except my clan, who are cool. But CS-S has only taught me to be distrustful and to question every time I get shot. Which is no way to spend precious spare time.
Edited by MrE at 06:41 GMT, 10th Mar 2005 - 5845 Hits
Novel Idea (33 comments)
Posted by MrE @ 12:18 BST, 16 June 2002 - iMsg
The Chapters within this Article will have their own section in XSR when Sujoy has time to design it. However, until then I have decided to post them here, for your comments and criticism.

If you like them, please feel free to say so, but if you have anything constructive to say then do it! I have a plot established, but the input from XSR readers could make this story more immersing.

I ask for your guidance, and in return, the story may get better as the plot develops.

I will update the chapters when I have time.
Article Page: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 || next page >>
Edited by CarMac at 10:22, 19th Aug 2002 - 53827 Hits
Hall of Fame: All-time Classic (added to hof by MrE)
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