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Valve

Things We Saw Today

Things We Saw Today: A Captain Picard Quilt

As long as you have this quilt by Candy Coated Quilts you can say you’re sleeping with Sir Patrick Stewart and it will only kind of be a lie. (Nerd Approved)

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Elsewhere on the internet

Valve Announces “Family Sharing;” Gamers’ Heads Explode

It’s not that gamers aren’t familiar with the idea of buying a game and sharing it with someone else, after all, that’s why you’ve got those three save game slots. It’s just that since the advent of digitally delivered games, achievement trophies, and Real ID accounts, it’s not something that we’ve dared to expect will be easy to do.

Which is why heads are exploding across the internet today, with the news that Valve, the company behind the massive digital distribution service for PCs that is Steam, plans to create Steam Family Sharing, a service that would allow users to share their entire game library with other users, on up to ten other devices.

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Fact From the Vapor of Nuance

Gabe Newell and J.J. Abrams Said a Thing and Then the Internet Exploded

What were Gabe Newell, founder of game studio Valve, and J.J. Abrams, now for-better-or-for-worse the undisputed master of the two biggest science fiction franches in Hollywood history doing in the same room? They were delivering the keynote conversation of the D.I.C.E. Summit, an annual gathering of video game executives.

What was the sentence the internet went crazy over? Well, I’m not putting it above the jump, it’s basically the entire story! Go on. Click.

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The Cake Is A Lie

Blogger Wants To Produce A Cirque du Soleil-like Portal Stage Show In Vegas, Needs $25 Million

A blogger named Gordon Knott has a really amazing idea. He’d like to put together a live stage show based on the video game Portal. He sees it happening in the style of Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas and would have an initial budget of $25 million. There’s just one problem – he doesn’t have $25 million.

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Review

Portal Lead Designer Kim Swift’s New Game Quantum Conundrum Is, Yes, Amazing

Gather ‘round, girls and boys, and hearken to the tale of Kim Swift. Once upon a time, when she was but a college student, Swift co-created a little puzzle game called Narbacular Drop. The game was later brought to the attention of Gabe Newell, the head honcho of Valve. Newell hired the game’s entire development team, and Swift became a project lead on a new puzzle game, based heavily on Narbacular Drop’s mechanics. The game was called Portal. You may have heard of it. In 2008, Swift (in conjunction with writer Erik Wolpaw, whom we have to thank for GLaDOS’ now-iconic dialogue) took home two Game Developers Choice Awards for Innovation and Game of the Year. Halfway through development of Portal 2, Swift left Valve for indie developer Airtight Games, simply because she wanted to do something new. That something new is a first-person puzzle adventure called Quantum Conundrum, released last week on Steam, and coming to Xbox LIVE and PlayStation Network in July.

I was excited for this game the moment I heard that Swift had designed it, but within an hour of playing, the game had exceeded my expectations. I was grinning through every level (okay, there were a few bouts of loud swearing, too, but come on, it’s a puzzle game). Sometimes I laughed aloud at a puzzle’s solution, just because it was so damn clever. To help you determine if Quantum Conundrum is for you, let me ask a simple question: Do you like having fun?

If you answered yes, play this game.

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Essay

Server Woes, DRM, and a Free Lunch: What We Can Learn From This Week’s Gaming News

Over the past week, some of the more noteworthy happenings in the world of gaming have unfolded like a parable about good business practices. Let’s begin: On May 8, Valve released the Perpetual Testing Initiative (a totally free level editor for Portal 2), which has been unsurprisingly popular. In order to thank the community for their enthusiasm, Portal 2 was on sale via Steam last weekend for a whopping 66% off. Skyrim and some Team Fortress 2 items were knocked down as well, because why not.

A few days later, several gaming news sites reported that EA was pulling down a big chunk of their Battlefield 3 public servers, in an effort to push players toward their $30-a-month rental servers. Unsurprisingly, an outcry followed. Shortly after, EA restored a number of public servers, stating that their intent was never to remove access to public servers entirely. They did, however, continue to talk up the benefits of renting in the same breath.

And finally, on Tuesday, Blizzard’s release of Diablo III — arguably the most anticipated PC game to date — was a big hot mess. Diablo III requires a connection to Blizzard’s Battle.net servers at all times, even while playing the single-player campaign. When the game launched at 12:01 AM, the resulting server traffic was massive (as one might expect), and many players spent the better part of the day futilely attempting to sign in. Keep in mind, players were able to purchase, download, and install the game client weeks in advance, which most did; all the server connection was needed for was to unlock the game.

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Things We Saw Today

Things We Saw Today: Harvey Keitel As Wolverine

Well this certainly would have made things interesting. Comics Alliance showcased as series of artwork from Alex Tuis depicting some interesting personal casting choices for Marvel superhero roles. Among them: Bruce Lee as Spider-Man, Naomi Harris as Storm, and Rutger Hauer as Thor. Now take a gander as what else we saw today.

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Things We Saw Today

Things We Saw Today: The Official Muppets Poster is Filled With Joy

It’s just so delightful! (At Pajiba)

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It is a gift!

Holiday Safety Tips From Aperture Laboratories

Portal 2 pre-orders open on Valentines Day?  Oh, Valve… you shouldn’t have.

I mean, we’re all going to buy it through Steam, anyway, but it’s the thought that counts.

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