News, and the latest updates.
Stories from the past...
Got a item of interest? Here's the place to go.
Your opinion always counts on how we can make GameSurge
Comments on our features, by you, the viewers.
Tweaks, reviews and a handy driver index highlight our newest section
Looking to buy one of the hottest games? We have it covered.
Get a advanced look at the games of tomorrow.
Find out more about the people behind your favorite game.
Need Help? We have a very large selection of walkthroughs now up.
A special section featuring the best in artwork and
The written word, by staff and viewers.
A bi-monthly column contributed by Mark H Walker, an independant writer in the Gaming community.
Pictures from around the web.
Our current hosting plans and features.
Who we are, what we do, our policies and job positions.
The Sony PlayStation, and beyond...
The Dreamcast resource, and more. Home of the DC Technical pages.
The Game Guy
By Mark H. Walker
Nobody Said Gaming is Pretty: Part Deux
My regular readers (bless the three of you), no doubt remember reading
about the sale of Interplay in the last Game Guy issue. Well, it turns
out that Interplay has been taken off the block. To be exact Titus, a French
company that owns 34% of Interplay, has decided not to sell. Not sure if
that is good or bad, it all depends on who might have bought Interplay.
An insightful company with lots of cash would have been a good thing. A
bunch of suits who know not Tetris from Tomb Raider would have wrecked
Interplay within a couple of years.
Hey, I know times are hard, but check this out. HPS Simulations -a small
wargame developer/publisher- refused to send me a review copy of their
latest offering, Tobruk ’41. Their representative claimed they had exceeded
their media budget... four days after the game was published! Gee, you
don’t suppose my poor reviews of their previous products had anything to
do with this, do you?
The Emperor’s New Clothes
News flash, the whole Internet thing isn’t working out too well, and
the list of failed dotcoms is longer than the excess verbiage in a typical
Gamespot review. There are a multitude of reasons, but poor management
and shrinking add revenue are the salient pair. I can’t speak to poor management,
but if the rumors be true, some game sites received as much as 11 million
dollars in start up funds. I guaran-damn-tee I could make a site run till
I die on 11 million dollars. Heck, I have friends that do it for less than
But ad revenue is a horse of a different color. Advertisers measure
success by the “click through rate.” In other words, the number of viewers
who click on an add versus the number of viewers who see the add. A one
percent click through is acceptable, two percent is great, but most adds
average less than one-half of a percent. Hence advertisers deem their add
campaign isn’t working, pull the add (or reduce funding), and the site
goes down the tubes. Who says, however, that click-through is an
accurate measurement of effectiveness? No one expects TV viewers to drop
what they are doing and phone 1-800-FORD after viewing a Mustang commercial.
Nor do I take the next exit off I-40 after ogling a billboard for “Joe’s
Couch Emporium.” Yet a seed has been planted in both cases. Who knows?
I year from now I may bring home one of Joe’s love seats in the back of
my new Mustang. Ad execs ought to chew on that.
I had a lot of fun with a duo of diverse titles this past week. Legends
of Might and Magic is 3DO’s take on a team-based online first-person shooter.
Surprisingly, it’s quite good. Players pick from six classes of warriors,
choose a side, and enter into the fray. There are four different types
of battles, from dragon slayings to princes rescues. The packet code is
outstanding. I played with a 33.6 connection and no lag.
Also surprising was Tobruk ’41 (yeah, I had to buy a copy). This is
veteran designer John Tiller’s best effort. Covering the battles between
the Axis and Allies in North Africa, this turn based wargame features clean
graphics, immense details, and tight scenario design. Now, if they would
just send out a couple of review copies they might get some press.
© Mark H. Walker, LLC 2001
Mark H. Walker is a veteran interactive entertainment journalist who
has written over 40 books including his recently released Video Games Almanac
and The Parent’s Guide to PlayStation Games.
Zalman: ZM-DS4F Headphones
An affordable, ultra-portable headphone set.