From technology to politics to video games; these are the random thoughts of a geek with too much time on his hands
Zoomba's Articles
May 14, 2010 by Zoomba
Everyone's favorite Stardock Forum wrangler celebrates another trip around the sun today.

Happy Birthday 
July 24, 2009 by Zoomba

Another week comes to a close as we inch towards the end of summer and the start of the holiday gaming bonanza.

Great Deals

This week we’re helping celebrate Paradox Interactive’s 10 year anniversary with a blow-out sale.  50% off ALL Paradox titles on the Impulse store. 

See the full list of Paradox games here.  All 50% off until July 27th!

Of course, there’s more going on with our Weekend Impulse Buys.  Check out the current deals we have running through this Sunday:

Now, on to new, updated and upcoming titles…

June 24, 2009 by Zoomba

ZeniMax Media Acquires id Software

Brings together two of world’s best game studios

Library of powerhouse franchises will include DOOM, Fallout, The Elder Scrolls,
QUAKE, Wolfenstein and RAGE

June 24, 2009  (Rockville, MD) – ZeniMax Media Inc., parent company of noted game publisher Bethesda Softworks, today announced it has completed the acquisition of legendary game studio, id Software, creators of world-renowned games such as DOOM, QUAKE, Wolfenstein, and its upcoming title, RAGE. The acquisition by ZeniMax Media joins together two of the finest, most respected videogame developers in the world, combining the first person shooter (FPS) expertise of id Software with acclaimed role playing game (RPG) developer Bethesda Game Studios – creators of the 2008 Game of the Year, Fallout 3, and the 2006 Game of the Year, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Bethesda Softworks will publish the titles of id Software other than upcoming releases previously committed to other publishers.

May 27, 2009 by Zoomba
Even though I rarely touch the JU side of our communities anymore, I still wanted to post a quick note here to share some good news.

This weekend (5/23) I asked my girlfriend, Elisa, to marry me.

She said yes! 

No date set yet, but I know for sure it won't be for another year at the earliest.

Yay!
March 23, 2009 by Zoomba
Ironclad has defeated Sony and advanced to round two! Thanks for all your support! But now the Escapist's Developer Showdown between Ironclad Games and Konami has begun and we need all the troops rallied! Help Ironclad win this contest of wills by heading over to the Escapist and casting your vote for them in the Western bracket.

You will need to create and validate (via email) an account with the Escapist in order to vote and have it count. Visit the URL below to create your account - regist...
March 3, 2009 by Zoomba

If you’ve been following Impulse (or Stardock for that matter) for any length of time, you know one of the things that sets us apart and makes us unique is how accessible we are, and how easy it is to get in contact with us, be it via the forums, IRC, e-mail or instant messenger.  We know that a lot of our success comes from our outstanding community of gamers, and we are always looking for new ways to get news out there, and talk talk directly to gamers.

Now, some of you may already know this, but over the last few months we’ve started posting to Twitter.

 

Twitter, for those of you who haven’t heard of it, is a micro-blogging service….

Here’s the official description:

Twitter is a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent messages.  People write short updates, often called "tweets"  of 140 characters or fewer.  These messages are posted to your profile or your blog, sent to your followers, and are searchable on Twitter search.

It’s free, and doesn’t require any special software (though there are some excellent twitter apps out there.  I use TweetDeck myself).  It’s also incredibly easy to use.

We use our various Twitter accounts to announce releases, interesting news bits, and even a few giveaways.  Not to mention we just like chatting with other users on the service.

If you’re on Twitter, you can follow us and keep up on what’s happening with Impulse:

  • @Stardock – The Official Stardock Twitter Feed
  • @ImpulseDriven – The Official Impulse Twitter Feed
  • @IslandDog – Spencer Scott, Stardock’s Technology Evangelist
  • @mittense – Trent Polack , Game Developer
  • @Zoomba – My Feed!  Mike Crassweller, the guy who brings you weekly updates and more

Follow us and keep up to date on what’s happening.

If you’re on Twitter already, post your Twitter name in the comments below.  I’ll check on this thread every now and then and update this post with a directory of all of the Impulse community members and their Twitter links.

January 19, 2009 by Zoomba
General Announcement:

Cogent will be conducting network maintenance at several of it's datacenters overnight tonight, including ones where some Stardock Servers are housed.  Between 10:00pm on 1/19 and 6:00am on 1/20 there will be brief periods of down-time and slow connections over the course of the maintenance.  This down-time will affect all Stardock sites & servers including (but not limited to):

WinCustomize.comDemigodTheGame.comSinsOfASolarEmpire.comStardock.comImpulseD...
December 16, 2008 by Zoomba

The 2008 GUI Championships is coming to a close with the voting for the Best Overall events happening right now, and the final winners to be announced this Friday (12/19)

The top prize in this year's contest is the ultimate tool for the digital artist; the Wacom Cintiq 12WX.  Wacom was extremely generous in donating one of these tablets as the top prize.  As with the Radeon HD 4850, I'm going to take some time to show off the tablet, as well as share some impressions from members of the Stardock Entertainment Art Team that use these tablets on a daily basis as they work on games such as Galactic Civilizations II, The Political Machine 2008 and the upcoming Elemental: War of Magic.

To start with, lets talk a little bit about the Cintiq, what it comes with and what it's designed to do.

 DSCF2511  DSCF2518 DSCF2526
December 2, 2008 by Zoomba
The 2008 GUI Championships is reaching its busiest point as the deadline for icons and skins is Friday, and the final phases of user voting taking place over the next two weeks.  What started as a trickle of submissions has now turned into a torrent, with over two dozen skins coming in over the last few days alone.  Just yesterday we crossed the 100 Entry milestone. 

To mark that, here is a truly epic post: The First 100 Skins of the 2008 GUIC…

...
December 1, 2008 by Zoomba
We are in the final stretch folks.  This Friday, December 5th is the deadline to submit Icons and WB Skins for the Most Usable & Most Unique events in both categories.  At 11:59pm EST on the 5th, we will lock the ability to upload new skins/icons, as well as the ability to modify already posted ones, so if you have any last-minute updates, get them in soon.

Judging will happen next Monday, and user voting will begin on Tuesday. 

The IconPackager event is absolutely insan...
November 20, 2008 by Zoomba

The graphics card world has long been dominated by two companies; nVidia and ATI/AMD.  The battle over the last ten years has played out like a constant tug-of-war with one side gaining brief dominance over the other.  This generation, ATI looks to have the upper hand with their HD 48xx series of cards.

If you take a winning spot in the 2008 GUI Championships, there’s a very good chance you’ll find yourself with one of these bad boys in your PC very soon.  So, today I’m going to give you a bit of a preview of the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 512MB Video Card.

First, lets take a look at the card’s base specs…

Card Specs…

Sapphire Radeon HD4850 512 MB Grapics Card

Specs:

  • Display Output: Dual DL-DVI-I+HDTV
  • Core Clock: 625 MHz
  • Memory Clock: 933 MHz, 1986 Mbps
  • PCI Express 2.0 x16 bus interface
  • 512 MB/ 256 bit GDDR3 memory interface
  • Single Slot Active Cooler
  • HDMI complaint via dongle
  • 7.1 Audio Channel Support
  • Microsoft DirectX 10 Support
  • Shader Model 4.1 Support

At stock settings, it’s a solid performer that stands up to pretty much every modern game out there; Crysis, Fallout 3, Far Cry 2 and more.

November 18, 2008 by Zoomba
For years we’ve awarded “medals” to winners in the various GUI Champs events.  In past years though they were really just virtual medals, and then some physical prizes.  This year though we wanted to do something special.  The 2008 GUI Champs has a new site, the best prize pool ever, so why not actual medals?

 

That’s a picture I took of one of the medals this afternoon.  These babies are actual metal, and are 2 3/4” in diameter with a...
November 17, 2008 by Zoomba
You've seen some teasers from Brad recently showing off the new look of Impulse and talking about a number of improvements we've been working on to make the overall user experience a better one.  Today we've put out an update to Impulse that will allow you to check out our latest beta version of the client.

For all the details on how to update to the beta version, and some of the new features, head on over to the ImpulseDriven Community site.

Be sure to let us know what you think and ...
November 17, 2008 by Zoomba
Attention all Dream-Makers, you only have a few more days to tweak and upload your Dreams for consideration in the Most Original and Most Usable Dream events!

Friday, November 21st 11:59pm EST is the cut-off for those two events.  Dreams submitted, or updated, after that point will NOT be elligible for the public voting round.  So if you have any changes to get in, time is running out.

Just to remind everyone, here's what we have up for grabs in these two events:

2 Sapphire Ra...
November 5, 2008 by Zoomba
Greetings Skinners!

Today we're making some minor tweaks to the GUI Champs 2008 Competition Schedule.  These changes are in part to work around the holidays (Stardock is closed December 20th - January 4th) and to give folks in the Dream category a few more days to work on their entries.

Dreams Most Original & Most Usable Dream Submission Deadline: November 21.Dream User Voting: November 25th - 30th.Most Usable Dream Announced: December 2ndMost Original Dream Announced: December 4t...