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Category Archive:   Gaming

It’s no coincidence that Remedy Entertainment’s latest game, Alan Wake, has more than a passing resemblance to Twin Peaks.  In fact, the creators of the game have often cited that the town of Bright Falls was heavily inspired by David Lynch’s creation.

I thought I’d list the Twin Peaks references I’ve found thus far:

  • Bright Falls has a diner called the Triple D “Oh Deer” Diner.  This is clearly a reference to the Double R Diner from Twin Peaks.  In fact, it has been verified by Remedy in the video commentary found on my bonus disc of the Collector’s Edition that their intention was to create a diner that was as close to the Twin Peaks diner as possible.
  • Another obvious one comes in the form of the eccentric Lamp Lady.  There can be no doubt that she is Bright Falls’ version of The Log Lady.
  • In a shed in Chapter 1 (the one with a radio inside) there is a locket hung up on a hook.  I wonder if this is a reference to Laura Palmer’s locket which became a key piece of evidence in the search for her killer.
  • The FBI Agent in Alan Wake is Agent Nightingale.  Julee Cruise’s music features heavily in the Twin Peaks series and helps create the dreamy ethereal feel of many scenes.  Julee Cruise can be seen performing her song “The Nightingale” in an episode.  Could the Bright Falls Agent be named after this song?
  • Agent Nightingale mentions in one of the manuscript pages that he doesn’t like the trees or the coffee.  This is the stark contrast to Twin Peaks’ Agent Cooper who often mentioned just how much he loved the trees and the coffee.
  • While on the coffee love in Twin Peaks, Alan Wake has an achievement called “Damn Good Cup of Coffee” which is an unabashed tip of the hat to Agent Cooper’s love of the Double R Diner’s damn fine coffee.
  • In Chapter 5 Barry asks “Is this some kind of secret society or something?” which could be a reference to The Bookhouse Boys.
  • There are owls in various places throughout the game and even within the live action prequels.  This is undoubtedly connected to “The owls are not as they seem” from Twin Peaks.

Please feel free to leave any comments with your own references.

If you’re wondering how to unlock the Boob Tube achievement in Alan Wake after already watching an episode of Night Springs on the television, then you’ve come to the right place.

SPOILER FREE!  The Boob Tube achievement relates to a specific television found in Chapter 4 near to the start.  When you’re about to leave the building in which you start Chapter 4, you will see a television mounted to a bracket on the wall.  Turn this television on and the achievement will pop.

I’ve started the Honours years in my Psychology degree and this year’s Psychopathology paper allows us to choose one of four Themes – I’ve opted to write my paper on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

I’ll be doing a fair bit of serious research and readings over the next few months as I write draft after draft whilst fine-tuning the final product. That being said, it’s great to start the research off with something that ties into one of my many other hobbies – videogames.

A research paper published in 2009 sought to find out whether playing Tetris can reduce the occurrence of visual flashbacks after a traumatic experience. The main theory is that flashbacks are visuospatial mental images and any visuospatial task (such as a computer game) will compete for the limited resources within our brains thus reducing the flashbacks common to PTSD.

Read the full article at PLoS ONE: Can Playing the Computer Game “Tetris” Reduce the Build-Up of Flashbacks for Trauma? A Proposal from Cognitive Science

Recently I tried to load up my Dragon Age: Origins save game on my Xbox 360 only to be greeted with the following message:

Unable to load save game as the required downloadable content is not present on the selected storage device. Please insert a storage device containing the required downloadable content, or download the downloadable content again.
Dalish Promise Ring

I had purchased the Collector’s Edition and it came with two pre-order bonuses of a Memory Band and a Dalish Promise Ring.  I entered in all of the codes for the CE content, Dragon Blood Armor, Stone Prisoner quest and the two rings.  Each downloaded without a problem except when I chose the Memory Band.  After it completed downloading and the download screen refreshed, the Dalish Promise Ring reported as being downloaded.  The problem is that it’s all part of a single file download called Promo Item Pack 1 so it authenticated only the Memory Band but not the Dalish Promise Ring despite having downloaded the physical content.  That is why it needed me to be online so that it could authenticate it at the start of each session against the Dragon Age BioWare servers.

I understand others are experiencing a similar issue but this time the inability to load save games related to either the Memory Band or Embri’s Many Pockets not being on the storage device.

Well, I have a fix that has worked for me as well as other Dragon Age forum users!

How to fix the “Unable to load save game” problem:

1. Log into and check your Download Purchase History.  It’s more than likely that the offending item won’t be in the history list.
2. Turn your xbox on and at the dashboard navigate to your relevant storage device and go into Games -> Dragon Age.  Find the likely file, for me it was “Promo Item Pack 1″, and delete it (or if you’re paranoid move it to a memory card and then remove the memory card).
3. Load Dragon Age: Origins and go into the Download Content section – because the DLC is no longer on your storage device you will get the change to redownload.  The trick here is to choose the item that was previously reported as not being on your storage device – for me I downloaded the Dalish Promise Ring first which automatically included the Memory Band (which was already authorised for my account).
4. Quit out to the dashboard and disconnect from Xbox Live.  Load Dragon Age: Origins and test if you can load your save game.
5. SUCCESS! You can now play offline!

I have confirmation from a fellow Dragon Age user that this fix worked for him when he had issues with both the Memory Band and Embri’s Many Pockets.

Guitar Hero on Apple Mac

See clips from the excellent Batman Arkham Asylum remixed using the original Batman theme song by Neal Hefti