Homeworld Cataclysm micro-review

HW:C – I was one of the biggest fans ever of the first Homeworld. Okay, I didn’t spend time learning 3D modeling and creating my own ships, or memorizing storylines, but for months prior to the game, you could find me spending hours every day in the beta test version… once it came out, I couldn’t stop playing it, even after I got Half-Life, and Unreal’s NaPali mission pack… it was always Homeworld. I expected HW:C to just be even better.

Boy was I wrong.

Playing is each different race gives you specific advantages, whereas in the first Homeworld it was merely certain ship types, but now it can be anything from research time to ships speeds.

The graphics are nice, but not quite what I expected from Homeworld 2, you know? The sequel shows enhancements from the original, but the engine is mostly unchanged. Sounds are going to be nice when I get my 5.1 sound card up and going, I’m sure… it does sound pretty good on my four piece system + power woofer, even though this is only a single output sound card (using a Y-jack).

The story line seems to be a continuation, from what I’ve read, but I’m not planning on playing thru story parts yet, until I get the newer computer up and running… you see – even my K62 @ 380 is lagging quite a bit… I had to tweak the graphics in order to keep the speed… the game is much more detailed, and certain ship types will be so heavily animated that it will cause slow downs.

Overall, it’s a good game on its own… but, I’m sure you’ve heard it before… if you’re a fan of the original, don’t bother with Cataclysm – it’s a huge disappointment, and should have never been given the Homeworld name. It’s nice, but should not be considered Homeworld 2, in my opinion, because it could be so much better. The game play feels rigid, nowhere near the feeling of awe that you had when playing the original for the first time. It’s hollow, the personality, the threat, the backstory – nothing is fleshed out the way the original was. This feels like a hurried sequel to cash in on the franchise before it is too late.

3dfx cancels Voodoo 5 6000, my thoughts

Archived editorial content (from the original NuAngel.net – November of 2000 – when I was just 16 years old. About 1-month prior to the December 15th, 2000 closing of 3dfx – my first hardware “fanboy” experience):

Here it all is… the latest about 3Dfx. In a press release yesterday, 3Dfx stated that they Voodoo 5 6000 has been cancelled. Well, not actually – more like sold.

November 13, 2000 – 3dfx Interactive® Inc. (NASDAQ:TDFX) announced today that it has licensed its 4-way Scanline Interleave (SLI™) technology, based on the Voodoo5™ 6000 AGP project, to Quantum3D to be incorporated into their AAlchemy™ family of PC-based systems for visual simulation and training applications. The company also announced that its 4-way SLI technology, which has achieved 43 percent better Quake 3 graphics performance over leading competitive solutions, will be available exclusively from Quantum3D, and will not be available in the retail channel.

“Licensing our breakthrough 4-way SLI technology to Quantum3D is the best way to expend our engineering resources in a way that offers the best return,” said Byran Longmire, vice president of the graphics business unit. “While we are sympathetic to the disappointment this may cause to a small number of our loyal gaming consumers, we are looking forward to seeing this incredible technology marketed to the visual simulation industry where visual quality is the most important attribute.”

For those of you who don’t know – Quantum3D is a long time “partner” with 3Dfx. Therefore, this shows that it is nothing to really panic about. It’s another in the line of countless deals. Notice, it is a business transaction – 3Dfx will make good money off of this… also, others state that the plant in Juarez, Mexico will be closing down. This I’m not positive of, and if it is true, I have no official reason why. An ‘insider’ told me that it will be good for them (and us) in the long run. Like I said to a personal friend (who’s not even too interested in 3Dfx, we were just talking):

Selling off the Juarez production plant (Early November, 2000 press release), selling patents ($$$$$), and re-dedicating all work to the “3Dfx RAMPAGE” card, could be the way they plan on getting out of this. Unfortunately, other rumors are that 3Dfx is done with cards, completely… kiss the Rampage goodbye, too? We’ll wait and see.