Farewell to one of the best game news blogs there ever was, GameSetWatch.  Overlapping content with improving sources have made it redundant.  Simon Carless, Eric Caoili and Danny Cowan offered their memories on the site.  Recently separated contributor Matthew Hawkins offered his own.

I'm thinking my writing contributions might be obsolete as well.  When I wrote Along The Tech Tree, it served to bring readers into the BYOND Strategy guild.  When guilds were phased out, BYOND and Within at least offered a way to avoid filtering through the recent blogs for game news.  With the site changes on the way, that news can be found in the top posts of dedicated forums.  There's even a place for the events I mention in the external links section.

It's not a bad thing.  The format is changing and some of my projects may have run their course, but developers should hopefully have an easier time finding direct communication. =)

I'll still be around.  I'll just have to figure out more relevant ways to contribute.  Maybe I'll even *GASP* manage to release a game again! ;)

Within BYOND

Silk Games recorded a small podcast episode, fixed some bugs and held a Cyber Monday sale, but their most important news probably involves the NEStalgia update they've been previewing.  While the MORPG's balance changes might have to wait, the new version will go live on Saturday with a gamepad mode, interface improvements and more.

After screenshot and video previews, Oasiscircle has released a beta version of Chicken Feat.  Run around, collect eggs and return them to your nest before time runs out.  Go earn a spot in the standings while Eksadus adds audio.

Chris Gayle and Zane444 have released an early demo of a wave-based platform shooter called Chromium.  The key configuration is described in the announcement.  The duo's colonial creature-channeling MORPG, Spirit Age, is still in progress.

Acebloke has updated his military/economic sim Wargames.  Highlights include rebalanced research, options for alliance leaders and in-game meanings for political ideologies.  Another update revealed that video tutorials are on the way.  Perhaps they'll help you win subscriptions in future contest rounds.  (Gratz, Myrin.)

Acebloke's multiplayer zombie rush Survive This has also been patched with manual barricade placement in non-survival modes and interface improvements.

In the comments of the last B&W, Ss4gogeta0 stated that trademarked references have been removed from his zombie horror Biohaze.  Meanwhile, ammunition has been reduced, light & textures have been added and character customization is in the works.  (I suggest changing the name and banner to less resemble the Resident Evil fansite.)

Nefarious Development have posted screenshots and a video of their MORPG Prism.  The latter is a demonstration of the inventory/equipment system and HUD anchors.  The rendered 3D models and isometric perspective appear to be working well for them. =)

AlexandraErin is again back from hiatus to work on her MORPG RetroQuest with a newly simplified talent tree.  Inspired by Terraria's sandbox, the world will contain a mix of static towns and procedurally generated environments.  Screenshots are available, but the comments state that they're a bit outdated.

Techgamer has announced a $2000 Kickstarter campaign to fund his MORPG Vault of Heaven.  Some of the crowdfunding articles I've linked to could be of use. =)

With the help of ExPixel and Unwanted4murder, Kumorii has been rebuilding the zombie shooter Feed.  Apparently, the old team drifted apart.  This screenshot and more can now be found in a dedicated forum thread.

ExPixel has been developing a new integrated development environment for use with BYOND projects.  A demo implemented in C# is available, but ExPixel has since moved to Java.

Meanwhile, Nadrew has made progress formatting hyperlinks and grouped messages in his BYOND-focused instant messenger.  The latter seems rather nifty, but can it top line numbers?! ;)

Beyond BYOND

  • Pay what you want for the Humble Introversion Bundle to receive Uplink, Darwinia, DEFCON and Multiwinia.  You'll even get the source code!  Those who pay more than the average will also receive Aquaria, Crayon Physics Deluxe and Dungeons of Dredmor.
  • Indie Royale's Really Big Bundle offers Really Big Sky, Runespell: Overture, Cthulhu Saves the World, Eufloria and Breath of Death VII.  The current price is roughly $4.  I've been having quite a bit of fun with Really Big Sky.
  • For the next two months, Experimental Gameplay Project is teaming up with 02L > Outside Standing Level to bring the 5 Buttons Competition.  Here's last month's "upgrade" roundup.
  • The Shibumi Challenge ends on January 31st.  Design the best game using the pieces defined by the Shibumi set.
  • While "editor" submissions to last month's event are available, Super Friendship Club has yet to announce their next pagent.  I'm not late this time.  Nyah!
  • Remember back in September when I told artists to take a shot at drawing Becky Beacon?  That's just one way to enter the Webcomic Beacon 4th Anniversary Giveaway which ends on the 4th. (BTW, AlexandraErin has been mentioned a couple times in the sister podcast Webfiction World.)
  • Those learning to program may wish to register for Stanford University's free, uncredited, computer science class which shall be online in February.  They're offering quite a few courses for those willing to look around.
  • Devin Becker's Ludology University offers design lessons now.
  • Josh Bycer made a game design argument based on anime filler with Naruto and DBZ references.  Tell me that's not destined to be reposted on BYOND.  Liar, I just did it.
  • I love it when Eric Schwarz rants about user interfaces.
  • Chris Franklin might be feeling frustrated, but I love Errant Signal and the latest episode is no exception.  Keep it up!
  • It took eight months for this guy to draw a puppy taking a shower.  Never trust a pixel purist with your art pipeline! ;)
  • Though I lack money, I enjoy feeling like I'm donating to charity.  (Ripple is my homepage.)  WeTopia might be a Facebook game I'll actually play...  Maybe.
  • Amanda Lange stated that this is the best internet argument.  I lack experience with the games, but I agree.
  • Where Are They Now?

It's past US Thanksgiving.  That means it's Christmas, right? (Whoa, Hyper Princess Pitch is out!)

Don't settle for a brief mention of activity.  Get games featured!  (Want to review?)

gracias AC and i will think up a new name as soon as I can.
Hey! I finally made it to the list with something besides MLAAS, go me.
A demo implemented in C# is available, but ExPixel has since moved to Java.

lol wut
Exactly what he said, the original program ExPixel was making was done in C#, but in the interest of cross-platform ease he's moved on to making it in Java.
My screenshots are usually outdated really soon after they're posted. I don't like to sit still.
I've got a tidbit of NEStalgia news that is probably best left here in the comments for now:

I've been keeping this under the radar because judging isn't quite over yet, but we entered NEStalgia into the Independent Games Festival back in October. Tonight we got a nice indicator that the game is already standing out amongst the crowd of 570 entries, because the most recent print edition of PC Gamer has an article called "New Indie Heroes" in which they list NEStalgia as one of the best entries in this year's festival.

I'm wary of linking directly to a scan of the article itself, but if anyone is curious then there is a topic with an image of the article available on our NEStalgia discussion board. We'll find out who the finalists are on January 5th, but this article makes me believe that we at least have a fighting chance to receive a nomination.

Edit: Ha, started writing my comment before Cyberlord84's comment was posted. Thanks :)
lol good job SW, I know you've been working on that game for years...

anyway I need to start taking some screen shots for [untitled]...
I sincerely hope you keep writing these articles, as they are are valuable to old & new members alike. The site change merely relocates them to the forums, where I actually expect them to be more visible.
Tom wrote:
I sincerely hope you keep writing these articles, as they are are valuable to old & new members alike.

I agree, these articles are incredibly well done.
Yes you must stay awhile longer, Your our Journalist... The Voice of the People!
I'm in agreement. I don't read the blogs as much as I used to so this has always been a good source of information on all the important stuff.
While the warm fuzzies are appreciated, I honestly fail to see what my column would offer. The strength of the new site will be how it forces the audience to congregate where developers have direct access to a dedicated sub-forum. Any visibility my column would gain will be displayed there first. Every one of my posts would essentially boil down to this:

Within BYOND: Look down in one sub-forum.

Beyond BYOND: Look down in another sub-forum.

The front pages of the relevant sub-forums will offer a thorough list of the BYOND items my digest would have presented. This automation of a service once provided by an unpaid volunteer is a good thing! I, or whoever catches them first, can still alert people to events and contests in the new forum dedicated to that purpose. The column's pull from the pager can be replaced with that of an unread thread/post count.

The only thing missing will be my questionable charm divided into twice-monthly chunks. I've learned to believe in the power of discrete events, but they have to offer something more valuable to those participating than a saved mouse click or two. The alleged service benefits neither the community nor myself.
The new forum system merely reorganizes existing content. The content still needs to be there! This biweekly post is one of the best things our community has going for it, and I would be very sad to see it go just on account of an infrastructure change. At least give it some thought when the new stuff goes live.
Dude, it's a digest. I'm not the content! I'm merely a guy who has reposted the content. I'm a middleman who has provided a barrier between developers and their feedback on the very site they made their announcements on. They never needed me in particular. They just needed the eyes they can now get themselves. Be content with the content! =)
I think you are really selling yourself short. There is a lot to be said for picking and choosing the best items and writing coherently (and humorously) about them. Of course, it's ultimately your decision and I understand if the biweekly job has grown wearisome. But do know that I and many others appreciate what you've done (and I hope continue to do down the line!)
That 2000$ fund thing is a huge lol. No offense. Just saying I really don't see that happening. On the other hand, excited about that isometric Prism game. I've played with BYOND's isometric but had many problems with it that couldn't be solved.
Looking forward to both Prism and RetroQuest.

Also keeping an eye on Chicken Feat.

I wish I could keep working on the games that would show up here, but NVS is just coming along so nicely! >__<

Especially with the helpful info Nadrew left me with. =P

Anyways, another great BaW of course, keep up the awesome work everyone!
Keep going with the BYOND and Within. :D

Keeps people up-to-date on what games or projects have been released or are WIP (work-in-progress).
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