Poor Fractured Tantalus

On July 11, 2007, in Games, by peterb

Snippets from a real conversation I had this weekend with my friend Nat:

Me: “Hey, you remember that game Exult, the re-implementation of Ultima VII?

Nat: “Sure I do.”

Me: “I’ve been not playing it quite a bit lately. I grabbed the sources from CVS and built it so that I could have a Universal binary to be not playing.”

Nat: “Did it build easily?”

Me: “It wasn’t too bad. There were some hidden dependencies that I needed to tease out. I probably spent maybe a half or or so getting the thing built, which isn’t that bad for something that I spend so much time not playing. And I didn’t like the idea of not playing the PPC version on my Intel box.”

Nat: “Huh.”

Me: “The most interesting thing is that there’s a concurrency bug in the midi thread. I spent about an hour debugging it and sent in a patch, so that the fan doesn’t spin up and the CPU doesn’t get hot when I’m not playing. I hate not playing games that make the fan spin up. They’re so loud, y’know?”

Nat: “You realize that this is the logical conclusion of “I like installing games more than playing them.”

Me: “Yeah, I know. I just really like not playing the Ultima games, though. There are so many of them that they really give a lot of bang for the buck. Not all of them, though — I tried not playing Ultima VI and it didn’t really grab me. Martian Dreams is great, though. I’ve also been not playing Flight Simulator, but that’s just a one-off.”

Summary: What the hell is wrong with me?

Additional Resources

  • More on my obsession with Ultima.
  • If you’re only going to play one Ultima game, play this one.
  • In the course of our further discussion, Nat and I discovered Blogging Ultima. Sometimes reading about someone else playing a game is better than playing the game yourself. Go figure.

2 Responses to “Poor Fractured Tantalus”

  1. Will says:

    World of Warcraft is a prime example of this. You cancel your account because, let’s face it, kill 30 boars isn’t fun, and then spend every second of the day reading about it on the forums, Wowwiki, Wowinsider, and so on. Then that just makes you want to play again. So you do. And it sucks. And then…

  2. Benoit says:

    So, when are we making the next big zombie game for everyone else to play?