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11:21am on Saturday, 5th November, 2005:

Ah, Computer Games


Of course, Civ4 won.

I was up until 2am last night playing it. So far, its use of a 3D engine is merely irritating (and that's primarily because I don't have full control of the camera and can't lock it just where I want it) and its gameplay looks very fresh. I'm a bit concerned about its emphasis on culture, but as I'm playing at newbie level I'm not suffering in that regard at the moment. Where I am suffering is with its speed: it takes forever to load and even with only a handful of nascent civs it takes an age between turns. I had to wait for almost 5 minutes for it to respond when I asked it to overlay the map with a grid of squares — gawd knows what's going to happen later in the game when there are lots of units about. Hopefully, the extra 512Mb of memory I bought this morning will help speed it up, but I suspect eventually I'll have to replace my 2MHz cpu with one that has a bit more oomph (either that, or run it on my 64-bit laptop), but we'll see. I did need to update my video drivers, which helped (in the sense that it actually gave me a menu when I'd done that), so it may be that some other tinkering might deliver faster performance.

The tutorial contains this example of an "it makes perfect sense to a software developer, but, you know what..." moment:

It reminds me of Microsoft's instructions to "Click start to stop".

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Copyright © 2005 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).