VALUE Field Reports #20: REMASTER ALL THE THINGS!

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Oh man, remember that one game that we always used to play? Yeah, that’s the one, with the graphics and the sound and the things! Well, Major Publisher™ also remembers, and they’ve remade that one game! There’s new graphics, audio commentary, and it has the same crude controls! Let’s relive the good old days and let’s hope our Nostalgia Glasses last long enough before we realise that most games back in the day were pretty terrible and we only played them because we didn’t know better!
YEAH, REMAKE HERE WE COME!
Enjoy this (non-remake) 20th issue of Field Reports!

Newsfromthefield

VALUE Interview
Look ma, we’re in the newspaper! Mare, a university newspaper in Leiden interviewed us. Does this mean we’re officially cool now? The (short) interview is in Dutch, but there’s a snazzy picture too!
The interview’s right here!

Ymir’s New Battlestation

Ymir has finally seen the light and asked Jarromir’s help to build a proper gaming pc. Jarromir eagerly jumped on the opportunity to fiddle around with Ymir’s parts (editor’s note: nice pun there, Bram) and after a while the new machine was purring to life.
Read all about the epic undertaking here!

Videogaming-new

Starcraft – How The Granddaddy of eSports Was Born

Starcraft is arguably the most important video game in eSports history. It even became South-Korea’s non-official national sport. If you’re interested in the process behind this amazing game, just *YOU MUST CONSTRUCT ADDITIONAL PYLONS* Oh, one second please. Now where did I leave that probe? Ah man, it died? How? WAIT, where did those Zerglings come from? Ah dammit, not this again!
Errr, like I was saying, this monumental game had a very interesting process and it reads like the existance was a freaky twist of faith rather than a thought-out development cycle.

You can read all about how Starcraft came to be on Blizzard’s website. Don’t forget that Starcraft 1 is available for free on their website AND that they’re releasing a remake soon!
Observe the creation of Starcraft here.

Duty Calls Yet Again – Will You Pick Up?

*Shuffles through papers* “Errr, guys? Why is this news? Call of Duty released in 2003, why do we report on this?” *inaudible answer* “Yes, World War 2, Call of Duty and Call of Duty 2 were both set in WW2 and while they were outstanding games, I don’t see why there’s such a media circus about an old game!” *annoyed inaudible reply* “Oh, there’s a NEW game set in World War 2? Aaaah, got it.”
Once again, Call of Duty proves that it is thé most innovative and original game series by having its upcoming game set in World War 2! I know, I know, such a unknown and never-before-seen-in-video-games setting! How will they ever find enough sources to represent that forgotten war accurately? And will gamers be interested in a WW2 shooter? After all, the Call of Duty series started in the very near-future and slowly expanded to the far future. Does the developer have what it takes to make a game set in history?
Will I be able to paint my M1 Garand pink and attach 6 different attachments to it so I look fabulous while teabagging dead Wehrmacht soldiers? We’ll soon find out!
Watch the trailer on Youtube!

DOOM Belongs in a Museum

A lot of major game developer are based in Texas, and the Bullock Texas State History Museum is opening an exhibition on video games starting July 29th. IdSoftware’s DOOM is among the showcased games, and apparently some pretty cool artifacts will be shown. Shacknews asked legendary DOOM developer John Romero what was up.
You can read their interview here.

Excavate! Mesopotamia

No, this isn’t a direct command to you, my subtly subliminally brainwashed minions, those will follow later. Excavate! Mesopotamia is a new game by DIG-IT, which aims at teaching kids about archaeology and heritage. Set in, surprise surprise, Mesopotamia, players explore the cradle of civilization through play.
Read their press release here.


Night Trap! Watch Out Behind You! Night Trap!

You might’ve heard of Night Trap, an interactive slasherfilm/game in which a couple of college girls are attacked by mysterious bad guys. Only by making the right decisions (and being in the right place at the right time) could the player complete the game. Apparently this game is one of the main reasons why Age Ratings were created for video games, even though it’s really tame by today’s standards. It’s being remade for the PS4 in honor of its 25th anniversary, and they released the catchy theme song for free.
Relive the (hilarious) horror and watch the trailer!

What’s The Deal With Airplane Food Human Meat?


Cannibalism is generally considered one of the gravest moral sins a person can commit, and even the most extreme life or death situations don’t (completely) absolve the eater. But in a digital world, where the player happily shoots, hacks, fights, tears their way through untold numbers of human enemies, the aversion to cannibalism is less defendable. Why is it okay to grind bones into potions, drain the souls of enemies, and shoot anyone who looks funny at you, but not eat their meat? A moral (and maybe delicious) question indeed.
Eurogamer looked at the taboo of eating digital humans (tastes like chicken!).

Video Games And Cultural Heritage


Last April 28th saw the Public Archaelogy Twitter Conference taking place, and Archaeogaming’s Andrew Reinhard seized the opportunity to talk about cultural heritage in video games. Not only that, he rightfully pointed out that the histories that we create in video games shouldn’t be discounted. Like our Dr. Random always says: it’s even more real when it’s digital.
Read Reinhard’s tweets here!

Fun For The Whole Family – Nazi Board Games of WW2

Yes, besides waging a terrible war and committing atrocities, Nazi-Germany had time to develop and sell board games. Before you start envisioning Settlers of Lebensraum, The Game of Reich, or Axis & Allies (no wait, that one is accurate), the games were slightly… more Nazi inspired than that. Think more… Swastika playing boards, uboat strikes against the UK, and rounding up Jews.
Yeah…. Yikes. Of course propaganda aimed towards children wasn’t limited to Germany during World War 2, as evidenced by Hitler getting punched in the face by Captain America on the cover of a comic. It’s just…. It’s because they’re nazi’s. Nazi’s bad. Nazi propaganda bad. Nazi propaganda aimed at children by turning horrific elements of war into a game, also bad.
Atlas Obscura has more on this interesting subject.

Reconstructing History With New Personal Sources – Memory Cards

A memory card does not only hold our latest progress in a game, it holds our history in the game. Someone else can look at the state of the game to try and reconstruct what kind of player (or even, person) you are. Low on shotgun ammo but more grenades than you can carry? You like to get close and personal. Is your white mage a few levels behind? That probably means you’ve recently swapped party-members. Is your memory card filled with 3D Sonic games? May god have mercy on your soul.
Gameinformer has accidentally invented a new research field in History, and I’m really interested in trying this myself. Someone got an old memory card lying around?
Watch Gameinformer try to piece together the identity of the original owner.

X-com Was Cancelled By Its Publisher


“Cancel us? NOT VERY LIKELY!” is must what’s gone through the heads of the trio that kept working on X-com after it was cancelled by their publisher, Microprose. They kept working on the game and managed to complete it, basically forcing Microprose to publish it. And I’m glad they did, because the series (both the original and the reboot) are among my favourite video games.
Watch Eurogamer’s video on this peculiar tale of stubbornness.

Remake Done Right – Wonder Boy

Remakes are a dime a dozen nowadays, and while some are great (Full Throttle, being a great recent example), some are just a lackluster port that don’t even bother to add anything new. The remaster for Wonder Bow: The Dragon’s Trap stands out, however. Not only did they add new graphics (and allow you to switch between old and new with the press of a button) they even kept the password-savesystem in place! A writer for Gameinformer found a paper on which he scribbled down the long passwords, and they still work. Even the box the game comes is the same type as the original SEGA Genesis gamebox!
Read about the remake’s attention to detail on Gameinformer!

Coding While Playing Minecraft


Oh Minecraft, is there anything you can’t do? From rebuilding Palmyra to emulating entire gaming systems, no challenge seems impossible to do in this blocky game. Students can now use the Education Edition of Minecraft to learn how to code within the game. The code is run in real-time in the game, allowing the students to program walls or entire projects!
The game just keeps on amazing me.
Want to know more? Click right here!

Kirby, the Accidental Hero

Kirby, pink ball of happiness and joy. Or, if you’ve played Super Smash, hellish demon from outside this dimension that destroys everything and all without remorse. Whatever your feelings towards this horrible, monstrous, and overpowered little piece of… character, the origins of his design will surprise you. Both his name and appearance are surprisingly banal.
Click here to find out about our most click-baitey text yet!

Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey – Gaming in Prehistory

Not satisfied with making games set in the last millennium, the creator of Assassin’s Creed went back further in time. Players are thrown into Africa, between 10 and 2 million years B.C. (I know, a very specific timezone) and are expected to survive with limited resources amongst sabertooth tigers and mammoths, while figuring out how to jump off high perches when the  cart of hay hasn’t been invented yet.

Kickstarter
Humans of the Internet Age

Although it currently looks like they won’t reach their goal, the concept behind this Humans of the Internet Age is so interesting that the project is worth mentioning. The idea is to develop a narrative puzzle-game, built from thousands of player submitted objects spanning all mediums. A truly crowd-sourced game! Not only do they turn to Kickstarter for funds, they’re also looking for contributors that submit media for their game.
Take looksie at their Kickstarter page
Announcements
If you have suggestions/ideas/contributions or just want to say hi, as always, feel free to send us a mail at news@valueproject.nl or contact us on our twitter @value_project

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