Review: The Magic Circle

The Magic Circle is a first-person puzzle game by Question Games. It is also a “genre-obliterating 1st person epic” by Ishmael Gilder’s TMC Games. Like The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and Infinite Jest, it’s a work about a fictional work that bears as its own title the title of said fictional work, causing much confusion. To alleviate as much of that as possible, I’m going to be referring to the real game as The Magic Circle and the in-universe game as “The Magic Circle”. Minor...

Programming in GameMaker

The first programming language I wrote significant code in was a dinky little scripting language attached to a GUI-based game development program called Game Maker (since rebranded to GameMaker: Studio). The program provides graphical interfaces for creating objects and defining their behaviour by dragging, dropping, arranging and filling in fields, and you can quite happily use this and only this to make a large variety of games: GM works on abstract enough concepts that you’re not restricted to one or two genres of game like you might be if...

Apple and the jackless iPhone

As anyone at all exposed to the internet will know by now, Apple has removed the 3.5mm audio jack from the new iPhone that’s coming out. This has been the cause of much wailing and gnashing of teeth, but will probably not be the cause of a significant drop in iPhone sales. Much of the prevailing attitude appears to be that now that the great gods at One Infinite Loop have removed the audio jack, people will just have to go on living without it, shouldering the burden of not...

GPU passthrough: gaming on Windows on Linux

For a long time, I’ve been trying to figure out just how to get the best of both worlds in terms of running Windows and Ubuntu on my desktop PC. I’ve tried the obvious options: I dual-booted Windows and Ubuntu on my laptop for most of my university career, and more recently I’ve tried just running a Windows host with a virtualised Ubuntu in VMWare. Neither of these approaches fully satisfied me. With dual-booting, the other OS on your system is a full reboot away. If...

Moving to a static site

As of today, this site is no longer powered by the Ghost blogging engine. Before today, this blog was a web application with a database and a complex application server with a lot of moving parts. Now it is a bunch of .html files. These files are generated by Hugo, a static site generator. Apart from a few unrelated CSS changes, you shouldn’t really notice a difference – although now you have to navigate to different pages to see different taglines, rather than just refreshing the front page....