An internet saavy friend of mine sent this over. It's a great little movie of a flash creation taking over a flash animator's workspace. And when I say flash, I mean, you know, Flash.
Gameknot is a great chess site and has consumed many hours of my work day. It's free, unless you want to upgrade to a special metal-based membership. Games are very easy to set up, especially if you like the low stress of only having to make one move every 7 days. I prefer the longer ones so if I forget to log in over a weekend I don't end up timing out. It's a fun diversion, with a lot of features including rankings, guilds (teams I think actually), game database of millions of possible moves, openings database and personal messaging. My username is jinglehopper, send me a challenge.
World of Warcraft's first expansion comes out a week from today, January, 16th, 2007. If you're not excited about the Burning Crusade, then you're no friend of mine. Go to the link above to download the opening cinematic (I recommend the flash viewer unless you want to wait hours for the bittorrent) which will play when you first boot up the game after waiting in line for 9 hours at your local Best Buy or Nerd Store. If that doesn't get your nerd juices flowing, then, sir, you never had a nerd heart.
The WOW community is ramping up for the new content so I thought I'd give a little shoutout to the fansites I check the most. Worldofwar.net has been around forever. It actually grew out of a Warcraft III site I used to check and is part of the LoadedInc network or something. The site is a great resource for the latest news about World of Warcraft, highlighting quotes from Blizzard or other fansites. The Admins are from Britain so they pay attention to both the EU and North American servers. In addition to news, they have a great database of guides and info about the game that I have checked countless times. The profession FAQs are especially useful.
These sites offer similar functionality. In the game, there are thousands(millions?) of different items. Some are junk and can be sold off, but most have some sort of purpose whether for a quest or for crafting purposes. Thott has been around since early beta in 2004, and has proved invaluable to me and everyone else who is trying to figure out where crap like Breath of Wind drops. The quest database and commenting system is indispensable. In typical outsourcing web 2.0 style, if the information you need isn't gleaned from thott's bot, chances are a fellow player has already given you the info in the comments. Wowhead is fairly new and offers a more streamlined interfacethan thott, although it doesn't have the years of user comments support that thott does. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, most of the comments are informative due to heavy administration. They weed out the "leetz hunter weapon!" crap that you sometimes must wade through on Thottbot. Wowhead also has extensive Burning Crusade info mined from the Beta including new recipes, spells, talents and items.
Just what you expect, it's a wiki of all Wow related material. It has great articles on nearly every facet of the game but I sometimes like to just read through the lore pieces. Sometimes you really just want to know the story behind Detheroc, dreadlord of the Burning Legion.
These sites are all concerned with customizing the interface of WOW. The original look of the game is great but there is just something tantalizing about being the complete master of my gaming experience. Using these mods, written by wow players and amateur programmers, I can go from this, to this,
The difference is huge (in a French pixie voice from Pulp Fiction.)