Tag: windows

0

“Let off some Steam, Bennett!”

Points to anyone who recognises the quote, which bears only a tangential relationship with the topic of today’s post.

So, what is it? Is the topic movies? Movie quotes? Arnold Schwarzenegger? The family featured most heavily in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice?

No – it’s Steam. And by that, I mean the digital software distribution platform, not the gaseous form of H2O.

Why would you write about that?

Well, truth be told, I’m running out of ideas a bit – it’s day 16 of Septemblog, I’ve written more posts on here so far this month than I have done for the past two years – I’m basically clutching at more straw than Worzel Gummidge in the throes of sexual ecstasy (with Mrs. Gummidge, obv.)

Still, someone mentioned Steam, and it made me think about how many games I have on my Steam account, and how many of them I’ve actually played. So, let’s get into statistics…

“Games, games! Everywhere I go – games! This is what my lifetime of achievement has been reduced to.”

Again, points to anyone who recognises the quote.

I joined Steam on November 20th, 2004, so I’m coming up to my 11th Steamiversary. Apparently I was a relatively early adopter, as Steam’s initial release was in September 2003.

The first game that I bought through the platform was most likely Half-Life 2, and this would tally up with my registration date, as the game was released on November 16th. According to mysteamgauge, where I’m getting these stats from, I’ve played 0.64 hours of Half-Life 2, which isn’t right as I’ve completed that game and it took me a damn sight longer than just over half an hour!

The last game that I bought was Shower With Your Dad Simulator 2015: Do You Still Shower With Your Dad? – a delightfully silly game written by one of the guys from the Making Games Megathread on the SomethingAwful forums. It’s also a game with a surprising amount of depth – and a not-entirely unsurprising amount of dong. I’ve played 0.1 hours of this, but I should really play a lot more as it’s quite enjoyable.

The game that I’ve played the most of is Far Cry 3, logging a total of 237.19 hours. I can definitely believe that, I spent far too long playing that game, completing every objective and raiding every outpost. Tremendously good fun.

Next up is XCOM: Enemy Unknown at a surprisingly-low 44.39 hours. I’m not sure that’s correct, as I feel like I’ve spent weeks playing that – but I could be getting it confused with the original UFO: Enemy Unknown (X-COM: UFO Defense for you Americans). The sequel to this, the imaginatively titled XCOM 2 (not sure if the subtitle is Enemy Known or not) comes out in February 2016, and I can’t bloody wait.

Totals

I have a total of 213 games on my Steam account, which – had I paid full price for all of them – would have been at least $3,500. However, Steam Summer/Christmas sales and Humble Bundles have meant I could acquire many of these on the cheap.

Of those 213 games, I have played approximately 85. That’s actually quite high, I wasn’t expecting it to be that much.

The total install size of all of my Steam games is a whopping 987.8 GB. But about 985 GB of that is Grand Theft Auto V.

Conclusions

I have too much money, and not enough time. A bit like Walter White.

0

getaddrinfo failed: A non-recoverable error occurred during a database lookup.

I faced an interesting (and by interesting, I mean incredibly frustrating) issue with a client yesterday, who had installed a PHP-based application of mine on their new Windows 7 laptop only to find that it was unable to connect to the MySQL database that powered it.

Testing showed that the connection was indeed failing, with this error being generated:

php_network_getaddresses: getaddrinfo failed: A non-recoverable error occurred during a database lookup.

I tried various things – forcing Windows to resolve localhost to 127.0.0.1 (rather than ::1) in the hosts file, disabling IPv6 altogether and disabling the anti-virus package (AVG). I even tried installing fresh, bang-up-to-date copies of Apache, PHP and MySQL. Nothing worked – although the hosts file edit did at least change the error message, now it just said "Unknown error" instead – still very helpful.

Bashing my head against a brick wall, I decided to turn off services one by one until the problem changed. So I did, and eventually I got to the services running as part of the AVG CloudCare anti-virus package.

Switching the Cloud Care service off suddenly meant that any pages I tried to load in my web browser were replaced with a silly "Your Cloud Care service is not running!" error message.

I uninstalled AVG Anti-Virus completely (rather than just disabling it) and the problem immediately disappeared.

One to remember!

0

Games That Never Were: Arena

As some people may know, I’ve dabbled in the world of game development before. I’ve never been particularly good at it, if I’m honest, not really down to anything other than a lack of good ideas, and a lack of time to do any ideas I had justice.

It’s something I keep meaning to have another bash at, not in any serious manner of course, just in a "bedroom programmer" kind of way.

Still, I thought I’d make a post about a game of mine that never quite made it past development. It ranks as the most ambitious game project I ever undertook, and actually got quite far down the line.

The year was 2002, and the game was called Arena: Multiplayer Deathmatch and, as the name suggests, it was an Internet/LAN deathmatch game designed for up to 32 players (although I only ever tested it with 4 or 5 before the project kind of fell by the way side.)

 

Read full post >

0

They’re comin’ out of the goddamn walls, let’s book!

XCOMArthur C. Clarke once said, "Two possibilities exist. Either we are alone in the Universe, or we are not. Both are equally terrifying."

It’s always been one of my favourite quotations, so it’s rather fitting that it gets a prominent place (right at the start of the intro sequence) to a reimagining of one of my favourite games.

X-COM: UFO Defense (or, to give it its European name, UFO: Enemy Unknown) was developed by the Gollop brothers, Julian and Nick and was released in 1993 by Microprose to an unwitting audience.

Read full post >

0

Thief: Deadly Shadows Tweaker (v1.2)

This software was originally released in April 2004, shortly after the release of Eidos’ Thief: Deadly Shadows, the long-awaited (but much maligned) sequel to Thief: The Dark Project and Thief 2: The Metal Age.

The idea was to provide an easy to use GUI to help players tweak their game settings in ways that the in-game settings menus wouldn’t allow.

Read full post >

3

SWAT4 Dual Monitor Fix

SWAT4, released by Sierra in 2005, is a great tactical first-person shooter that puts the focus on saving lives as opposed to taking them. Unfortunately, the game doesn’t like dual monitor setups and most of the time bluntly refuses to load without the screen flickering like hell as it tries to work out what resolution […]

Read full post >