Late Night Computing: September 7, 2012

By Tyler J. Smith, Sep 07, 2012 5:00pm PDT

Happy Friday, Shackers. It's September 7, 2012, and your weekend begins.....wait for it.......nope, only after you read Late Night Computing.

The end of this week only means one thing to me - football. After the New York Giants lost to the Dallas Cowboys on Wednesday night, I'm down 0-1 in the Shack Pick'em League. Great way to kick off the season. Here's hoping my first pick in the Shack Survival League goes slightly better. I was knocked out half-way through last season, sadly. Football gods, have mercy on my sad, sad team.

News bits.

  • Go inside Naughty Dog with their environmental designers for an outstanding examination of how they "design, create, and make game worlds." [via Naughty Dog]

  • This week saw several different new mobile devices introduced to the press, including new toys from Nokia and RAZR, with much more in store for the next week - including the fabled iPhone 5. MIT examines the recent conferences and technological incrementalism. [via MIT Technology Review]

  • Need something to do this weekend? Download Chrome and give this top extensions list a whirl. [via Tom's Hardware]

  • Did you happen to check out today's Google doodle? If you like Star Trek, or just really cool things, make sure you do! Read about its development in this article. [via Venture Beat]

  • See how a toothbrush saved the International Space Station from a pending disaster. [via The Atlantic]

Chatty posts of the moment.

Make sure you log-in and check your filters if you can't see the following:

  • "Dota2 Thread - Hero Discussion Lich Edition. There seems to be a new wave of invites and some shackers are joining in the fun of Dota2. So let's discuss about some heroes beginning with Lich, one of the commonly suggested starting heroes when learning Dota. I think this will be useful for new players to know how to begin and for more experienced players to pick up some tips they may not have known." [by Alco23]

  • "I forgot how awesome this one mission from Alpha Protocol is. Minor spoilers here if you haven't played AP.

    Basically you move through a chateau with a sniper rifle with a special scope attached that analyzes human faces. You check out the guests at the party of a suspected terrorist and your handler gives you a short bio for them. Obviously you can choose to shoot them based on the information you get.

    It sounds simple but it's such a good idea. Having a person in your ear saying 'this person is an art dealer' or 'this person is a military contractor' or whatever really changes the stakes in choosing to pull the trigger. It makes it much more personal and interesting in a way that most games never really get at." [by Sexpansion Pack]

Nightly file.

  • Mage Tower alpha demo 1.0. "Take the depth of Dwarf Fortress, add a bunch of lazy mages and update the interface to modern standards? That's Mage Tower in a nutshell. We're building something really ambitious - a world that you can build to your own whim, while carefully balancing resources, knowledge, and external threats." Download the alpha demo for Windows or for Mac.

Media.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown gameplay trailer:

2K Games releases new footage of the PC interface and gameplay with this trailer, which should help you settle which version you'll be purchasing. PC? Yup.

Catch a look at the level editor for ShootMania Storm from PAX Prime 2012, along with a developer diary introduction to Forza Horizon, and a Hand of Fate preview trailer for DC Universe Online.

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