Almost bought this, and now it’s free!

Valve has just removed pricing from Team Fortress 2 — the seminal multi-player first-person shooter — in Steam, Valve’s online game distribution network.

Previously I’d been a Battlefield Heroes fan, but got busy and had little time for it. Now, with TF2 being free, and having a bit more time available, I may just give it a whirl.

And if you’d previously purchased TF2, no worries, you have exclusive access to special content not available to us free-loaders 😉

A great couple of weeks to be an iOS gamer

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Three exciting games were released for iOS devices in the last week and a bit. One was from a well-established computer and console development juggernaut. One was from a (now) blockbuster company that made their name on the iPhone and iPod Touch. And the final one from a small but respected Canadian design house, is currently taking the iTunes App store by storm – becoming Game of the Week on launch day. And if you’re planning to pick up an iPad 2 tomorrow, you might want to make these your first downloads :smileyhappy:
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My most anticipated game of 2011 [Video]

Portal 2

I loved Portal. It was a challenging, entertaining and darkly humourous puzzle game in a First Person Shooter style.

And later this month, Valve will release Portal 2. Yes, it’s more Fun, with Science!

Basically, you have a gun that creates a portable hole that is a gateway to another portable hole. The Blue-ringed hole is matched with the Orange-ringed hole. What goes in a Blue hole, comes out an Orange hole.

Your challenge is to work through increasingly difficult mazes. To what end? Well, that would be telling!

Simple. Then it gets complex! Check out this new video, and previous Portal2 videos below!

And a demo of one of the new game-play elements – bounce!

The April launch date can’t come soon enough. Available on Steam, and in the regular retail channels, on PC, OSX, and consoles.

World’s workforce suffers huge productivity loss due to Google

Earlier today Google decided to see how much it could influence the economy and productivity of first and second world nations by unleashing a viral online attack against Internet-connected office workers world wide. Ostensibly promoted as a 30 year anniversary of a classic video game, Google is, in reality, bringing workplace activity to a crawl.

In Canada, on the Friday before a national holiday long weekend, the impact was realized when innocent office minions using Google’s website to search for information from the previously-trust-worthy search engine, were instead cleverly diverted  by an insidious interactive animation based on the ’80s arcade-game classic Pac Man.

According to a report by the Toronto Star:

Created to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the creation of the video game icon, the interactive doodle actually features all 256 levels from the original monster game hit.

Just how much productivity will be lost by employers whose workers will get waylaid by the new distraction on its homepage while doing a search? Wendy Rozeluk, a Google Canada spokesperson laughed and responded: “I have no idea.”

At workplaces, universities, cube-farms, and computer science labs around the world, the Pac Man theme could be heard anytime someone tried to look something up using the popular search engine.

“This is getting annoying…” said one user, declining to give her name for fear of retribution.

But it looks like a reprieve from the Pac Man theme is close at hand. Google will remove the Pac Man Doodle mid-day on Sunday. Until then, perhaps keep the sound turned down on your system when ‘searching’.

Open the Portal. Discover a new game. Yes it’s free!

Unless you’ve not been paying attention to the first-person-shooter or puzzle game genres over the last few years, you’re quite aware of what Portal is. But just incase you fall into that aforementioned category, let me quote from … …more



This post is an excerpt from one of my weekly posts on the Future Shop Techblog. Check out the full post here.