I wish I could say that things like this were the extent of my family’s deep madness.
Common wisdom holds that one should not shop for groceries while one is famished. That has never sat quite right with me, because if I come home with string cheese, a big thing of beef jerky and six bottles of stout I feel like things went about as well as they could have. I only mention this because I believe I’ve stumbled onto some strange corollary to this supposed rule that has to do with binary files. I know! It’s invigorating!
I went to Sourceforge because I had read somewhere that The Ur Quan Masters - essentially, Star Control 2 without the Name Star Control - was out there and available for download. Star Control 2 (and Starflight II, obviously) are games I recall with such fondness. I had initially written “extreme fondness,” but I removed it because, really, what would that look like.
I grabbed the files for it, which are available for Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, and BeOS (for some inexplicable reason). They’ve done a great job and it will only become cleaner and more sensible as time goes on. If you’ve never experienced SC2 before, keep in mind that the last time I played this was on a 386, which ran it silky-smooth. This was when we thought two hundred and fifty-six colors was rather a lot of colors, maybe too many for our liking. I know you aren’t supposed to care about graphics if you’re a real gamer or something but graphics are really important. How important they are is a personal consideration, so whether or not this’ll float your boat is something I can’t say. Do give it a shot, though.
I went to Sourceforge because I needed a single file. And I was very happy with the file I got. But, like some Weezerian sweater, once tugged something began to unravel, revealing a deeper hunger for files that I shudder to relate to you now. Useful files! Un-useful files! Files I don’t need! I began to discern that this executable or another had a “smoky” flavor, or was perhaps “robust.” I found great stuff I didn’t even know I needed, like a great, free multitrack recorder called Audacity. Celestia is like this star thing. Galeon, I mean, there was no reason to download that. I don’t think it will even install on Windows.
I was kind of freaking out near the end.
We’ve got the family in town still. I thought we’d escaped them when we came back from Spokane, but like some horror cliche there was one attached to the undercarriage or some shit, and maybe one on the ski rack or something and now they’re everywhere.
You’re clever people, though, and I do not doubt that you will find many ways to amuse yourselves. Why not check out John Scalzi’s novel Old Man’s War, available on his site? You might remember that he advertised his book Agent to the Stars here with us a few months back, and I seem to recall quite a few people enjoying it. You could also check out Scott’s rant about the dastardly, fictitious Mavav - he certainly comes at it a different way then we might.
this world will never want us here