Purchasing Mass Effect 2

Steam is having yet another insane sale (after the pre-xmas-sale, but before the new-years-sale). I played Mass Effect 1 and loved it, and playing Mass Effect 2 has been on my list for a long time.

This journal chronicles my attempts at the Purchase of Mass Effect 2.

23:58 hours left
Ohh! Mass Effect 2 costs only 15 bucks on Steam! For the next 24 hours! That's totally within my budget!

But I don't need it right now, I should sleep over it. Contemplate the purchase. After all, I still have several games I haven't touched (Super Meat Boy, VVVVV, Aquaria). Mass Effect 2 will probably be discounted again in the future, perhaps for even a better price.

I decide to sleep over it.

05:48 hours left
I can get the "Digital Deluxe Edition" for the same price as the not-deluxe normal game. Neat.

05:35 hours left
Hang on, there's a bunch of DLC I will need to get the "entire" game. Let's research.

04:58 hours left
The Cerberus Pack, which I get automatically with Mass Effect 2, will grant me access to about half of the available DLC. But I still want the rest (the story-related stuff. I don't care about the cosmetic things or the unbalanced extra-weapons).

04:48 hours left
Mass Effect 2 DLC cannot be bought with any known Earth Currency (apparently Bioware have never heard of this "Earthen Dollar" or the "Terran Euro"). Instead it requires these so-called "Bioware Points(TM)", which I can buy with my monies, before exchanging those in trade for the rest of the game I would like to play.

Also, it appears that these "Bioware Points(TM)" aren't based on the hexadecimal system, but instead use the number 8 as a basis (whatever that is called). I will have to employ more than the usual amount of math for this transaction.

04:32 hours left
Have to do other, real-life-related stuff. But I still have 04:31 hours left, so there is enough time to figure this stuff out.

00:59 hours left
There is not enough time to figure this stuff out. Crap.

00:58 hours left
All DLC combined will cost me 2560 Bioware points. This includes the cheap-o cosmetic and game-breaking-weapons updates. Without these, it would be 1920 BW points.

I figure that if I have to get Bioware Points, there will be an excess, which I might as well spend on this stuff. So, how much Euros will I have to bleed to get the actual, full, Mass-Effect-experience?

00:54 hours left
Apparently there is no information to the prices of Bioware Points ANYWHERE on the website. This will require more research.

00:47 hours left
My fourth search-query, aptly titled "how much do bioware points cost" (after "what the hell do bioware points cost" failed miserably) leads me to a steam-forum post, detailing, that I can purchase Bioware Points in packs of 400, 560, 800 and 1600 points, for several increasing dollar-amounts. (who though of these numbers anyway?)

Unfortunately, this says nothing about the european prices. Of course I could just google international exchange rates, but the probability is good that it could be anything at all.

What will I have to do to find this out?

00:45 hours left
Turns out I have to sign up in the "Bioware Social Network". That's another level of log-ins, just after Steam, the Cerberus-Network, and the visit to the actual Bioware-site.


00:42 hours left
Signing up for the Bioware Social Club (or whatever it's called).

00:41 hours left
"Your e-mail is already in use".

When the hell did that happen? I can't remember EVER doing anything here.

00:40 hours left
I log in with my e-mail and what I think could be my password.

Ahh, apparently you can also log in with your EA-Account, of which I have already seven. WELL WHY DON'T YOU SAY SO

00:39 hours left
I am now a proud member of the Bioware Social Network, with all the spam this entails (note to self: update spam-filters), which also apparently shares log-ins with EA (like google and youtube do with each other).

... which in turn just creates another layer of half-shared logins between websites, and some mass-confusion.

Now to get Bioware space-money.

00:35 hours left
After failing to locate the "get space money NOW"-button, another forum-post tells me I have to go into the profile-settings, where I can chose to "add bioware points".

Ok, search.

00:34:23 hours left
Ahh, there's that ridiculously small button. PRESS.

00:34:07 hours left
"Please enter login data". What? I just did 2 minutes ago! And I even pressed the "remember me" button, so I wouldn't have to do this again. This website seems to specifically disobey the orders I give it.

00:33 hours left
For some reason, I land on the "Dragon Age"-part of the website. Fine. Whatever. Continue.

One good thing: Prices seem to be the dollar-amount translated into euros, which means it's not automatically 15% more expensive just because I don't sit in North America.

00:25 hours left
Using the amazing powers of maths I compute that I can get the interesting DLC (without cosmetic packs) for 18 eurobucks, and all of it for approximately 23.

Time to act.

00:20 hours left
After going through the prices in my head again I realize that Buying Mass Effect 2 will set me back at least 33 Euros, and 5 Euros again if I want the "actually complete full game with all stuff"-edition.

So I can pay more than twice of what I expected, or play some VVVVVV.


00:10 hours left



Derrick, the game I worked on at Daedalic, has finally hit the shelves.

It's a hidden-object-game based on the famous (or so I'm told) german TV-series, and I guess it's nice to being handed such a massive franchise to work with. It was a blast to work on this, especially with my talented, motivated and nice team (well done, guys).

Compared to similar games I believe I can say that we did well, and brought in some fresh ideas to advance the genre.

Stuff I worked on:

Several Level-Designs
The Majority of the mingames
General Game-Design
The Interface
Several graphics, wherever necessary

Also, I was the Lead tester, meaning I played this thing for three weeks straight. Fun Times.

Here's some more screenshots of the game. Enjoy.


Constructive Feedback

So I've handed the current version of Incrediball (working title) over to some friends and watched them play. Here's the rundown:
  • it's too difficult
  • quite easy, could be harder
  • it's too long
  • way to short
  • this feature is obviously clear - why do you explain it?
  • it took me 3/4 of an hour to understand that stuff
  • your new interface-system is awesome
  • what's with this stupid interface?
  • I haven't died/respawned in 40 minutes - are you serious?
  • why am I dead again - are you serious?
  • needs more blood
Yup, it's pretty awesome alright.

Here's a still from that awesome game. Still a WIP/Prototype though.


Matthew on Game-Design now 100% in english!

Compared to only 4.5% before. Enjoy.


tautintetraenen online

The blog of the versatile September, tautintetraenen, has just gone online.

Go check it out. Here's that link again.


Incrediball-prototype not on school-website after all

Instead we got a mock-up screenshot of "Dodos!!!", a work from a year ago.

Well, it's a net-gain :-)


My game on the Game-Design-School website!

My ball-minigame, which I made within two days a few months ago, will maybe be featured on the new Design-Schule-Schwerin website! (And possible print-brochure. Which would be much more awesome.)

The objective was to create a Pacman-Clone in 3rd-person. After figuring out that it wouldn't work, I tripped everything but the basics and created a new game on top of that.

Currently I'm working on a complete version of said game (with 4 months development time instead of 2 days), which will appear on this site.



Should have made another screenshot without textures.


Daedalic Internship Post-Mortem

My three months with Daedalic are over, and it's time to return to Game-Design-School.


Friends met in Hamburg: 4
Projects worked on: 6,5
Job on primary project: 6
Nice people met: ca. 55
New friends made: many
Impression made: very good

By the lovely Simone.


Gamecity Hamburg Meeting/Party

Interesting people seen: approx. 150
Interesting discussions had: several
Aquaintances met: 5
Drinks had: 4
Bagels eaten: 1,5
Business cards given away: all of them.


End of Daedalic-Internship approaching

My three months with the wonderful designer of Daedalic Entertainment are almost over, and I'm quite happy having been given the chance to work there.

I have worked with nice and interesting people, have learned valuable lessons and had the chance to participate in several interesting projects.

Now I will return to Game-Design School, to make some interesting games in the third year.


I'm on Internet-TV!

Approximately at 00:14



Blog/portfolio is finally online.

Google tends to redirect people to this ur-post, thus bypassing the rest of the website.

Click http://matthewongamedesign.blogspot.com to get to the good stuff. Or click the header of this website, whichever seems more efficient to you.