According to Anders Behring Breivik’s Facebook profile, now deleted but immortal in an archived PDF form, the Norwegian terrorist was a gamer, playing World of Warcraft and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. The terrorist was responsible for killing more than 80 (the number continues to rise) youth camped on the island of Utøya. While his motives are unclear, Anders Behring Breivik tweeted a John Stuart Mill quote, “One person with a belief is equal to the force of 100,000 who have only interests,” days before the attack, and uploaded a YouTube “manifesto” (see 2083 A European Declaration of Independence.zip if you want to read the plagiarized document) including the following image:
According to his manifest/diary, he viewed “Call of Duty, Modern Warfare” as “a good alternative as well” to marksmanship training:
I just bought Modern Warfare 2, the game. It is probably the best military simulator out there and it’s one of the hottest games this year. I played MW1 as well but I didn’t really like it as I’m generally more the fantasy RPG kind of person – Dragon Age Origins etc and not so much into first person shooters. I see MW2 more as a part of my training-simulation than anything else. I’ve still learned to love it though and especially the multiplayer part is amazing. You can more or less completely simulate actual operations.
While the link between violent video-games and real-life violence is subject to much debate, the use of ultra-realistic games as effective simulator trainers, either for flying airplanes, carrying out military missions, or learning other skills, is indisputably an issue. In today’s world, when one can lookup how to make bombs online and practice shooting in Call of Duty, anyone could become a one-man-terrorist.
Kotaku has more commentary on the role of Video Games in this act of terrorism . For more general information, see At Least 80 Dead in Norway Shooting from the New York Times and Follow Up of the Day: Norway Attacks Suspect Identified.
Update: Slashdot has published The Oslo Massacre and Violent Video Games: the Facts, decrying “media hysteria” about the role of videogames in committing this act of terrorism.
If you see a big, black screen when you start Borderlands (mine was bought via Steam), you’re probably running specs like mine and have recently upgraded your computer:
Windows 7 (win7) x64 bit
Intel i7 processor
ATI 4850 graphics card
Here’s a couple tips that got me going:
- Try adding -w 1024 -h 768 to the startup shortcut. It could be your new/old resolutions don’t match, so force it to a standard one and then change it in-game!
- Right click on the desktop shortcut, go to “compatibility” and pick Win XP SP3. Also check the “run as administrator” box.
Now try again and you should be in business!
The biggest video game launch ever, selling 5 million units within 24 hours of release, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 isn’t as good as the hype. As a big fan of COD4: Modern Warfare on the PC, I was biased towards the game before I ever unwrapped it. However, I have big problems with the short, unsatisfying single-player campaign and the lousy multiplayer support on the PC. The $10 increase in price from $50 to $60 for the PC version also does little to assuage my dissatisfaction.
There’s a large section of the MW2 Wikipedia entry which details criticism of the PC version, which I would rather cite than rewrite:
Criticism has arisen of changes made to the PC version of Modern Warfare 2 including the lack of dedicated servers, latency issues of the listen server-only IWNET, lack of console commands, lack of support for matches larger than 18 players, and inability to vote towards kicking or banning cheating players immediately. Ars Techinca writer Ben Kuchera wrote, “At launch, this will be one of the most locked-down, inflexible, and gamer-unfriendly [games] ever created.”
This is immediately evident in the Amazon reviews for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, which are hovering just above 1-star. Reviewers complain about the tiny multiplayer matches (9v9 tops), the fact that Steam is required (no resale value), horrible multiplayer latency, and poorly planned out single-player campaign. The official steam forums are ablaze with outrage over the bad multiplayer, especially. Still, the game has peaked at over 95,000 concurrent players multiplayer (according to steam stats).
MetaCritic gives the game a 89% rating, but actual humans have knocked that down to a miserable 16%. On other platforms the spread is narrower–after all, this is a console game, ported for the PC. Infinityward, perhaps trying to emulate the design decisions between multiplayer in Left4Dead, screwed up on their tried-and-true FPS multiplayer scheme. On the console your bad lag, join-in-the-middle, and 9v9 matches might be OK, but on the PC we like big maps, lots of players, and dedicated servers with low latency.
We’re PC gamers. We want a long, immersive single-player campaign. We want a good storyline. We don’t want to be babied with chicken-screens for the “good parts” of the game. We don’t want to be pandered to with juvenile “shock screens.” And, we get tired of being shot in the head and dumped to die in every mission.
From QuakeCon 2008 come these screenshots of ID Software’s latest game, RAGE:
We’ve put together a gigantic free download of maps for the popular HL2 Counterstrike Source mod Gun Game that we’re sure you’ll enjoy. At 194MB of raw maps, 676 killer files, get your mod game on! A tag in the .rar file identifies this as “SICFORUM CSS GunGame MapPack.”
Download now: CSS Gun Game GG Maps.rar!
Here is a listing of the files in this download; warning, it’s long, so I’m hiding it behind a cut. You’ll have to view the full post to see: (more…)