Jan 6 2014

My Media Holiday: The Rules

Yesterday I posted about why I’m going on a media holiday. Some of you have asked me about what I’m doing exactly, so I thought I’d share in more detail.

In short, the point is to reduce information input into my brain, and see what I get up to when I don’t have constant distractions to run to. Over-abundant entertainment can make us blind to things in our own lives, and when you also read self-help and spiritual material for entertainment (like me) the constant advice and directives can get very confusing.

So I decided to see what happens if I turn off the information overflow for a couple of months or so. This is not a new-years resolution, or a solemn vow, but merely an experiment. If I fail, I learn something useful. If I succeed, I probably learn something useful also. Failing would almost be more interesting.


These things are forbidden:

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Jul 14 2013

Puzzle and Dragons – Action Loop

Puzzle & Dragons is a Japanese mobile game developed by GungHo Online Entertainment.

This article focuses on the moment to moment action of the game itself, the micro-loop, but if you are interested in the larger strategic aspects and the monetization, then see Puzzle and Dragons – Macro Loop and Monetization.

Match Orbs

At the core Puzzle and Dragons is a match-3 game. You match up lines of 3 or more of similarly colored Orbs to make the disappear, much like Puzzle Quest, Candy Crush Saga or Bejeweled. What makes the game feel completely different is that when you choose an Orb to move, you can move it as far as you want. Thus, a good player can get multiple lines matched up every move.

Matched    Matched done Continue reading

Jul 9 2013

Puzzle and Dragons – Macro Loop and Monetization

Puzzle & Dragons is a Japanese mobile game developed by GungHo Online Entertainment. I’ve sunk a few dozen hours into this game already, and have been tempted to spend money, but due to how much the monetization currency costs I decided against it. Aside from this one major flaw, the macro loop of the game is well designed for monetization and when this is written the game is the number #13 grossing game on Android and #23 in the Apple store.

The macro-loop of Puzzle and Dragons is a very “Pokemon-esque” gameplay loop where you expend Stamina to send a team of Monsters to complete Dungeons which give you Coins and Monsters. You can then increase the power of your team using those Coins and Monsters.

Macro Loop Graph Continue reading

Jul 4 2013

How are games using sex?

I’ve been thinking about how sex and sexuality gets portrait in computer games and why it’s a touchy subject. I don’t really want to get into whether it’s desirable to include it or not, but thought I’d take a loot at how different games use them.

The most tasteful example that springs to mind is Mass Effect.
Mass Effect Mass Effect 2
Mass Effect 3 Mass Effect 4

Though controversial for depicting gay and lesbian scenes (oh my!), sex is used as a dramatic tool to progress the relationship between the characters. They’ve grown to trust and respect each other and the sex emerges out of that.

Scarlet Blade does things very differently. Continue reading

Oct 2 2010

How to win the lottery

This article will not teach you how to increase your odds of winning the lottery. That’s a sucker’s game.
Any lottery is set up for you to lose on average. Even if you buy every possible combination and nobody else wins, you will still be losing money. Or to put it differently, the lottery people take in more money than they dole out in rewards. This is how they stay in business.
This article is about “winning” the lottery in the sense that you have a chance of getting the jackpot without spending an unnecessarily large amount of money on it.

You don’t need to win “on average”. You only need to win once. Therefore, the best strategy is to maximize how much you win and minimize the cost of playing.

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