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News Blips: Valve’s Newell speaks code about Half-Life 3, software-patches on 3DS, and the Fez soundtracks’ mysteries

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My neighbors love it when I play Trials Evolution They get to listen to me stick my head outside the window and scream, “I am the leaderboard god!” It’s a very spiritual experience at 3:30 a.m.

News Blips:

News Blips: Newell speaks code about Half-Life 3Valve Managing Director Gabe Newell uses safety words to chat about Half-Life 3. Valve is a funny company, as we can clearly tell from its employee handbook. In fact, that handbook mentions an empty fifth-floor shelf that the company is saving for all the awards that Ricochet will eventually receive. For those of you, like me, that have no idea what Ricochet is, it’s a Half-Life mod from 2000 that was one of the first things available for purchase on Valve’s Steam store; which brings us to Ricochet 2 and Gabe Newell on the Seven Day Cooldown podcast.

Ricochet 2 probably isn’t a real thing. Instead, in the following quote, replace Ricochet 2 with Half-Life 3, since that seems to be what Newell is insinuating. “In terms of Ricochet 2, we always have this problem when we talk about things too far in advance,” Newell said.

“We end up changing our minds as we’re going through and developing stuff, so as we’re thinking through the giant story arc which is Ricochet 2, you might get to a point where you’re saying something is surprising us in a positive way and something is surprising us in a negative way, and, you know, we’d like to be super-transparent about the future of Ricochet 2.” I mean, when he puts it like that I understand — the team doesn’t want to over-promise and under-deliver — but I don’t want to understand. Just give me my HL3, and until then I’m going to be irrational about it.

The Nintendo 3DS will get game-patch support. Mario Kart 7 for the 3D handheld has a busted track. The Wuhu Mountain course contains a glitch that allows nearly a third of its length to be bypassed. That’s the point where a normal developer would jump in with a patch to fix the bug. Nintendo isn’t normal. Thankfully, in what appears to be a brave attempt by the publisher to get slightly more normal, the 3DS will receive a firmware update that will provide the ability to fix software with a post-release download. Nintendo will release the Mario Kart 7 patch sometime in May.

Even Fez’s soundtrack has hidden secrets. File this one under things that are just way too crazy. Apparently, the Xbox Live Arcade game from developer Polytron doesn’t keep all its mystery eggs in one basket. The soundtrack from artist Disasterpeace contains images hidden in the audio spectrum of many of its tracks. What kind of pictures, you ask? How about some President Harry S. Truman or some John Locke from the ABC show Lost?

News Blips: Fez's hidden Truman
A hidden Truman sounds like something dirty.

News Blips: Fez's other hidden images
This is what I see everytime I close my eyes.

As GamesBeat’s Evan Killham (he’s also Bitmob’s) very pointedly asks, “why is anything?”


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