My site for talking about the customization of Windows.
Frogboy's Articles
February 26, 2015 by Frogboy
Interesting article on Kotaku today in which activist Anita Sarkeesian expresses what she’s looking for from game developers.

Ultimately, she is looking for games to keep 8 guidelines in mind when making games:

1. Avoid the Smurfette principle (don't have just one female character in an ensemble cast, let alone one whose personality is more or less "girl" or "woman.")
2. "Lingerie is not armor" (Dress female characters as something other than sex ...
February 25, 2015 by Frogboy
Disclaimer:

I work for Stardock which makes Start10.  That means I have a vested interest in the quality of the Windows 10 start menu.  The better the start menu is, the fewer copies of Start10 we sell. On the other hand, the worse their start menu is, the fewer copies of everything else we make will sell.  So overall, I would prefer that Microsoft make Windows as good as they can.

At least it’s there Windows 8 didn’t have a start menu at all. It had a start screen. As ...
February 24, 2015 by Frogboy
I have seen the future and it is good.  I like Windows 10. A lot.

I’m not loving their Start menu and while there is hope it will improve, it is good to know that Start10 is available.

Here is the current Windows 10 build with their Start menu:



I have a lot of problems with this.  First off, most desktop users are using the start menu to get to their stuff.  Stuff is more than just apps.  The Windows 10 menu is a “Modern” app which means no context menus....
February 23, 2015 by Frogboy
One of the things we were excited to add to GalCiv III was more detailed race customization.  This time around, we’ve made it a lot easier for people to create their own truly unique civilizations.

You can set your leader to be different from your species Right now, you’re doing the eating but later, they’ll be eating you. Of course, when making a GalCiv race you get to play AS that race and then later play against it if you so choose. So when designing them, you also can set up ...
February 22, 2015 by Frogboy
The Social Justice Warrior took a sip of coffee harvested by slave labor in South America. The hint of chocolate, brought to him thanks to the work of child labor in Africa filled the plastic cup that was made possible thanks to imported petroleum from a repressive regime. He gazed sternly at the screen on his MacBook whose parts came from forced labor in China. Something was wrong. His brow furrowed. Something was very wrong.

“I cannot buy this [game/movie/toy/rubber duck],” he whispered ...
February 14, 2015 by Frogboy
I don't really have a dog in the console wars. Personally, I think both the new consoles are pretty outstanding from a hardware point of view.

That said, a few uncomfortable truths:

The PS4 hardware is better. Significantly. There's no amount of hand waving that make XBO's choice of DDR3 go away.People are too hung up on hardware. Hardware mattered more in the 90s but software is king. All the HW in the world won't make a DirectX 9 game be able to deliver more than 10k batc...
February 8, 2015 by Frogboy
A couple weeks ago I wrote about DirectX 11 vs. DirectX 12 and how they worked.

Bottom line: DirectX 11 stuffs all the commands to the GPU through a single pipeline. DirectX 12 makes it parallel. In theory, you could see an Ntimes boost (N = number of cores). 

The article got a lot of coverage with some people arguing that such massive gains due to a platform change were impossible.

I had the advantage of knowing that Star Swarm was going to be benchmarked on DirectX 12 vs....
February 5, 2015 by Frogboy
Greetings! We need your help!

This year we have SIX games (not including Star Control) that are being released or going into early access this year.

We want to make sure we highlight the coverage these titles get on the major game sites that would traditionally cover these titles.

Please comment below on any sites you think I’m missing that have substantial traffic that you think are likely to cover PC games as well as ones you would like us to talk to.

 

Game Sites:
...
February 4, 2015 by Frogboy
–RELEASED 02/05/2015– (Island Dog update)Sorcerer King Beta 4 is now available! See below for details on the enchantment system, Tinkerer sovereign, custom sovereigns, and more:

*************
 

We’re putting the final touches on beta 4 of Sorcerer King.  It is a massive change from beta 3 and we plan to have a beta 5 before release.

NOTES: Beta 4 will be MAYHEM as we have not even attempted to balance the crafting enchantments yet. So feel free to go nuts as...
February 4, 2015 by Frogboy
In my day. We had sprites and we liked them!
January 28, 2015 by Frogboy
Last year we released zilch.  No new games, no new apps.  It was a year of building. 

This year, things start to get interesting.

Let’s take a look at just this Winter:

February: Offworld Trading Company goes into Early Access

March: Sorcerer King is scheduled for release

April: Galactic Civilizations III is scheduled for release

And we still have two more games that are unannounced that are going to be shown at GDC.
January 21, 2015 by Frogboy
Sorcerer King Beta 4 is starting to come together. We expect to release it in early February.  There’s a ton of changes coming to it, most notably the new crafting system and summoning system. 

Below are two screenshots that give you a taste of some of the visual changes coming too.

 



January 15, 2015 by Frogboy
I hadn’t used Windows XP in years.  It’s easy to get nostalgic about how great Windows was back then.  Then you load it up and try to search for a file and you’re greeted by a dog.
January 14, 2015 by Frogboy
Unlike previous versions of DirectX, the difference between the new DirectX and previous generations are obvious enough that they can be explained in charts (and maybe someone with some visual design skill can do this).

This article is an extreme oversimplification. If someone wants to send me a chart to put in this article, I’ll update.

Your CPU and your GPU

Since the start of the PC, we have had the PC and the GPU (or at least, the “video card”).

Up until DirectX 9, the C...
January 14, 2015 by Frogboy
Well the party is almost over for you humans.

I’ve never hidden the fact that I consider human beings playing my AI a necessary evil.  I need your money to fund my AI work.

This time around, I’ve got a talented young developer working with me.  He makes me feel old. Very. Very old. 

A lot has changed over the past 20 years.  It is still technically C++ but it’s all very different from what it used to be.

Example code



//GalCiv III:  Examp...