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Site Information:
Web browser round up

Google Chrome
Speed: Normal
Security: Medium
Vulnerability: High

Firefox
Speed: Normal
Security: High
Vulnerability: Medium

Opera
Speed: Normal
Security: Medium
Vulnerability: Medium

Safari
Speed: Normal
Security: Medium
Vulnerability: Medium

Internet Explorer
Speed: Normal
Security: Medium
Vulnerability: High

The above are generalised comparisons and within any update after Nov 2016 they could change. However, it is fair to say that most browsers offer very similar features and none are really much faster than another in terms of functionality. Where the speed often is affected is by the speed a browser redirects and updates a number of associated advertising URL's. For example when you type a url www.myurl.com you expect to go to that site directly. However, if that site or the sever it's hosted on has some kind of agreement with advertisers then it will send information to those advertising about your visit. It maybe anonymous information that is shared but I can't say for sure. So as you travel the web, if you pay close attention to your status bar(if you have one visible) you may notice that before your browser went to the url you chose it visited five or six others quietly and quickly without updating the page. Usually this type of activity was how Google Chrome and Google partnered. Their browser was designed to speed up all the redirections to their advertising system. In the end they got a browser that could out perform most others for a while. Afteral most sites use Google advertising now so it makes sense that the Google Chrome browser would be the most streamlined for that.

However, from a computer technicians point of view and from recent issues regarding browser security and performance, It should be noted that most of the technical people are using Firefox. Not for any other reason than it is the most secure or can be secured in a way that minimises vulnerability. Hackers and people using anonymous web surfing technologies usually partner with Firefox. So if your technician is using Firefox, then I guess that means they know things you don't. Firefox technologies seem to be similar to the Google Chrome browser but the difference between them is purely the issue of security and vulnerability. Almost all browsers are reasonably the same in terms of speed but Google Chrome seems to interact faster with Google advertising and usuage statistic sites. Overall Google Chrome is very easy to use and people generally like it's interface. However, the only reason i am writing this is because I am worried that the current browser usage statistic indicate an excessively monopolized market.

W3 School is the place most web developers visit to learn whats new on the web coding scene. They also keep statistics that indicate how many people use each browser. In 2016, Google Chrome was used by 73% of users. In 2012 it was only 46.9%. according to W3 School: http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_chrome.asp

It becomes worrisome when there is little diversity. A little Antagonism keeps things healthy and well, but if things keep going as they are we may have a problem in the years to come. The problems being mainly that our Internet usage and the browsers we use have become tied to a large network of advertising, data collection, usage monitoring and other functionalities all simplified by the fact we are all starting to use one browser to plug into that vast system that operates in the background. In effect we simplify the lives of those monitoring what we read, listen too, what we type and what we do on the web by using a browser that plugs into their monitoring system. Some argue it's purely for commercial and anonymous purposes. But some of us think there should be a more relaxed system in place, one that allows advertisers and authorities to collect their information without the rigor of the current model. As an example I visited some websites using Google Ads and whose servers used Google services and after selecting to go to the requested site, I noticed there was a redirection of information to 7 other places before landing there. Surely they could reduce this to two?

Posted by admin on 2016-11-26 01:44:11 UTC

Game News:
Age Of Empires Online

I found some old art on the web from Age Of Empires Online:

"A Greek Donkey fooled by a carrot to pull a load"

Some of that art had a real value to us all. It gave us what we needed sometimes to realise that there are people out there that think the same. We just need a carrot big enough for them to want to bring back the game sometime in the future.

Anyway I leave you with some long forgotten dock side guarantees:
Khe Sanh


Posted by admin on 2016-11-16 03:51:37 UTC

Site Information:
Age Of Empires Revisited

In age of empires revisited we added over land trade, some new units like a "look out" and adjusted the technologies for a better game. On top of that the hardest part was re-balancing the game. We felt that the ultimate units were way too powerful and they indeed were. So now things have changed to make all units more or less valuable with effective counters. Before siege dominated everything but now they don't. The exciting part of 1.17 is that it now has some very refreshing multiplayer scenarios. A Mini RPG scenario, Numerous map scenarios and many strategic maps. Oasis, Anatolia, Mediterranean and MICHI just to name a few.

The site to download the mod is at Sourceforge Open Source Project Page Those with voobly can install it from their Mod center Voobly Mods

We are trying to make the mod as accessible as possible on all platforms and hope to see the mod available in other lobby and server systems. AOE does not have the same easy access hacks found in ROR, which is why we have not yet considered moving the mod to ROR.

Enjoy it till the next next mod release.

Posted by admin on 2016-07-14 23:38:02 UTC

Site Information:
Spartacus is surrounded but trying hard.

This morning I found myself being the only person hosting an AOE game. As the day progressed a few more went down the path of the city states in Age Of Empires instead of the Rise Of Rome expansion.

Posted by admin on 2016-07-07 14:51:56 UTC

Site Information:
Age Of Empires Online Returning Soon? Maybe!

Back Me Up! No matter where you are and in which small capacity that you can.

Posted by admin on 2016-06-16 09:33:42 UTC

Game News:
Age4Greeks Lobby Client

Several years ago an open source project emerged that was designed to replicate the old Microsoft Zone lobby. A program was distributed among the Greeks known as the Age4Greeks Lobby.

Little was said about the program and what it offered but we feel it should be brought to everyone's attention since it is one of the few true lobby systems on the web.

This is what it looks like.


To play on the Age4Greeks lobby system you just have to click on the Age4Greeks icon at the top of the in the right hand column on this page. It will take you to Age4Greeks website where you can download the lobby client.

Warning: There Are Two Client versions, Greek and English Sometimes the English version is not updated so the best way is to download both and copy the english.lng file and the LobyClient.ini to the Greek version or copy the exe and dll files form the Greek version to the English version folder before launching.

Posted by admin on 2016-05-16 05:19:38 UTC

Game News:
Age Of Empires Revisited (2016)

Ever wondered what happened to that old classic game Age Of Empires? Well the broader community has been doing amazing things to make it better. The Age Of Empires Revisited project aims to offer some long overdue game fixes to improve the overall game experience. If you haven't already tried the new balance patch that is part of Age Of Empires Revisited then I urge you to download and give it a try:

The patch 1.07 is considered at the Final Alpha balance stage
Age Of Empires Revisited

Once we have balanced the game we will then look at including some additional features to make the game feel fresh and new.

Posted by admin on 2016-05-15 03:18:04 UTC

Game News:
Game Recording

Recording game options. There aren't many good game screen recorders out there, especially free ones. Many people will know about FRAPS, a commercial solution to recording games. The only drawback is that it is not entirely compatible with some older games like the original Age of Empires and it's expansion Rise of Rome. However Microsoft has given us a little treat in Windows 10. Press Windows Key and G within your game and you will be presented with a screen recorder that is designed to record video games. I believe it works whenever an application uses specific DirectX features so it may work for some other applications that are not considered Games but use a DirectX screen.

The feature is called Game DVR and launches by pressing the Windows Key and the G key on your keyboard.

support.xbox.com

Posted by admin on 2016-05-06 06:19:16 UTC

Site Information:
Game For Sale

I have been involved with gaming for many years but never had the opportunity to develop my own game aside giving input here and there as a co programmer, arts assistant, and variety of other roles.

So I would like to offer a basic model for a game that I think is refreshing and politically correct for the RTS genre. Like many bastards out there they take our ideas and make them games but never bother sending us a thank you payment or donation. So if you use this idea please send me some cash as I feel very ripped off by many big companies that used my ideas and made games without giving any credit or monetary remuneration. So i must state I am not a no-body that you can walk over and steal from thinking no-one will notice. If you like what I have to say then by all means develop the game but give credit and $ to show your appreciation.

Of course I will not be specific because unless your on a payroll the best you can do is give a general idea. So everything I have to say is going to be politically correct for the time that this post is being made.

1. The Game Name will be anything that does not highlight an aristocracy, bureaucracy, monarchy or empire. The game will personify the City States because the USA was founded on that fundamental principle when it took that daring schizm from their colonizers.
2. The internal workings of the city will be a meta game that is functional and dynamic. Your city will progress by building, reasearching technologies, and trading. But this city environment is almost completely a single player experience so that those who want to decorate their cities can do so.
3. City Meta Game
a.) Buildings - Resource Gathering, Manufacture and Processing, Trade and Military
b.) Reasearch - Two types of researches will be implemented, the first affects the city and various aspects of it. The second will affect the multiplayer engagement during battles.
c.) trading - Two possibilities firstly between players and secondly at stores.

4. Inter City Engagement
Alliances - Forged with NPC entities each offering different strengths and weaknesses to the City and the multiplayer battle games
Conflict - Cities in conflict can be attacked and plundered for no more than 10% of their resources every 24 hours. Cities can only fight when they are online at the time a battle has been engaged. Conflict is resolved by a battle between the conflicting cities. The losing city has the option to 1. Sign a tribute 2. become a temporary vassal or 3. offer a white peace. The conquering city can 1. accept a tribute, 2. attain an extra 10% population cap in battles for having one or more cities as vassal and receives a 10% production bonus while the conquered city gains a penalty of 10%. A white peace means that neither city is affected by the battle. If no agreement is made then a city conquered by the same opponent more than once within a week becomes a vassal automatically. A winning defender gains 5% increase in production for 24 hours upto 50%. An attacker who loses gets a 5% penalty to their production up to 50%.

Inter City engagement can only happen between established cities towards the middle to end game.

5. PvP Battle Sessions
a. A public area for communication with players is important
b. Only one battle system should exist this must be Regular PvP
Battles are standard RTS style based on the style of Age of Empires, Starcraft and Command and Conquer Generals. Battles are standardized non gear dependent but carry over some variables from the mother city of the same polity ie Athenian, Spartan etc. So the Meta Game City of Sparta may have a max bonus of +5% pop to military in battles and because of the Inter city engagements Sparta gets an additional 5% population increase where as Athens gets 5% reasearch cost bonus. Only one Inter City bonus should apply per battle, they can be standardised.
c. Regular PvP will include some bonuses to PvE players and PvP players by level. This can be a scaling of Hitpoints to units or some other variables that won't affect end game. This can be done in tiers like AOE3 where cities gain PvP levels and PvE levels. PvP bonuses can focus on military and PvE bonus on economy but only offer say a max of 30% bonus end game. eg 1% per level as a bonus or even less depending on attribute and balance.
d. Two types of games can be played Random Map and Death Match
e. Staged games with a lobby or some gathering point where players can pick and choose opponents should remain non ranked.
f. Auto Matching Solo and Team games should be ranked. The ranks do not affect any part of the game but the more matches the more bonuses should be offered for PvE and PvP players.

6. PvE
1. Random Hack and Slash
People playing PvE will require constantly new quests. Because standard games take rather long Hack and Slash games should be adventures generated randomly. Resources will be high like in a death match and many of them will affect the meta game city and the units used in PvE. Hack and Slash usually means you usually have an army or high resources and set out to conquer something through a given path.
2. Scenario Quest Lines
More than just build up and conquer these Quests may include video and audio preludes and entail detailed campaign information like for instance the story of Odysseus and his return from Troy.
3. Death Match and Random Map Co-Op

I envisage the Meta game to look a little like the Total War series campaign map and the in game battles to resemble the Age Of Empires series.

The Opening Line Up Of Cities:
Athens
Egypt
Maya
Persipolis
Babylonia
Assyria
Celts

Next Phase
Sparta
Macedonia (Greek)
Sicily
Lybia
Ethiopia
Aztec

So that is it for now. The kind of units and the game should be adventurous I would not exclude using monsters from mythology in a sparing manner as end game units while maintaining a standard and typical army.

If flying units are included, they break the game strategy because there is no effective way to stop flying units without flying units and towers and other land defenses may only help to a limited extent because units can be replaced but defenses are costly and timely to establish.

So if anyone wants to build this game let me know. I believe it is Obama ideologically appropriate and even if Donald Trump does get in, just tell him it's a war game :)

Posted by admin on 2016-04-17 21:51:44 UTC

Game News:
Game Servers

After almost a decade I have updated the servers that you can play on on the right hand side of my webpage. I have no affiliation with them or earn any benefits from referring people to them. I used to support Voobly almost exclusively but things change. I am very disappointed with Steam and Voobly, SkyBox and their developers for changing our games to the point where our favorite parts are now no longer fun to play.

Don't get me wrong, I and those I play with are still into Age Of Empires and Mythology, but you are better off playing LAN or single player than multiplayer. The scene is not as exciting as it was, and most of these servers force you to play with their version of the game.

GameRanger is probably the only unrestricted and pure server hosting service. Voobly has implemented a system that eventually requires you to play the same patch as everyone else. Steam requires you to purchase their version of the game and to use their patches.

Posted by admin on 2016-04-03 11:06:00 UTC

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