If you step back and think about it, Games Workshop produce a staggering amount of new products not only per year, but per month. It’s something I don’t think they get enough credit for.
New models across multiple game systems and ranges. New boxed games. New source material for those games. New paints and other “hobby products.” New novels, novella’s, short stories, and audio dramas. A new issue of White Dwarf. Not all of these categories will get something every month, but many will get several.
That’s impressive, no matter how you feel about GW.
Shadowgate was a formative experience in my early youth. A brutally difficult NES RPG, it was the first time I played what was effectively a video game version of the Choose-Your-Own-Adventure books I’d been enjoying. When I say it was difficult, I mean it — it took me more than one sitting to get through the door at the very beginning of the game! I don’t think I ever managed to complete the game, despite my efforts.
I’d heard about the 2014 remake of the game, but never got round to playing it until a few days ago. The artwork is miles ahead of the original (obviously). It might not to be everyone’s tastes – it was very “concept art” style in many places. I found this led to many aspects of a room being missed at first inspection. The story is pretty much the same, perhaps with a few tweaks. There’s a little more “world building” than the original, I think?
The biggest departure was the difficulty. Despite the game retaining many of the same “frustratingly non-obvious solution” mechanics of the original, I managed to complete it in one sitting. I only died twice! (stupid Goblin…) Granted, it did extend into the early hours of the next morning, and I have over 20 years extra problem solving experience than I did when playing the original, but still…
At the current Steam price of <£3 for the edition that comes with all sorts of extras, it still gets a recommendation of worth your time if you’re nostalgic, or just fancy a new RPG game. I’m not sure I’d spend much more than that, given how short it turned out to be, but who am I to tell you what to do with your money?
Nintendo have announced the (predicted) SNES version of their Classic Mini. I’ve already registered to be notified of the preorder. The list of 20 games included on the system has some of my facourite games of all time. There’s a previously unreleasedStar Fox 2 too. Even if it hadn’t had 7 games I absolutely love, I’d have preordered based on how much fun we’ve had with last year’s NES version.
Hopefully it’s easier to get hold of one this time around.
This blog is generated by Jekyll, running on Caddy HTTP/2 server, and hosted on the lowest-tier Digital Ocean “droplet” (virtual private server). Self-hosting isn’t for everyone, but if you’re the sort of person who wants complete control over your content and how it is delivered – and who might like to tinker every so often, then read on.
The basic steps to setting up are:
Prepare the Droplet
Setup Jekyll and your workflow
Thankfully for me, other people have already written up their own guides for each of these steps!
To create the droplet that will host your blog, you’ll need a Digital Ocean account. If you don’t have one already, sign-up using my referral link to get $10 in credit.
1. Prepare the Droplet
Create a new Ubuntu 16.04 droplet through the Digital Ocean dashboard, then follow this guide to initial server setup. This should give you a nice base to work with. One thing I like to add to this initial setup is Fail2Ban, which will automatically ban the IPs of connections trying to login with wrong SSH credentials (which will be anyone but you):
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install fail2ban
# Fail2Ban should automatically start. Check it with the line below:$ systemctl status fail2ban
One more thing you can do (not neccesarily required, as you setup <code>ufw</code> firewall on the server) is enable a Digital Ocean firewall from the dashboard, and limit connections to just ports <code>22</code>, <code>80</code>, and <code>443</code>.
2. Install Caddy
Installation of Caddy is covered by this guide. I followed the steps pretty much as-is, with only minorr changes to match my setup (different username, etc). The biggest difference in my setup was I installed a couple of plugins as part of my Caddy installation. To do this, change the command in Step 1 to the following:
This will install the Minify and Cloudflare plugins. Check out the Caddy home page for more plugins.
I set my site to use the Auto-HTTPS feature of Caddy, which gives the site a SSL certificate via Let’s Encrypt. I also wanted to use Cloudflare in front of my site, which isn’t covered in the guide above. After a bit of trial-and-error, the steps I used are below. If you don’t plan to do this, skip to Step 3.
2.1 Using Caddy Auto-HTTPS with Cloudflare
First off, you need to setup some environment variables. To do this for the Service you will have created using the guide above, run the following command:
$ sudo systemctl edit caddy
This will open up an editor for you to override or add to the main service file. In the editor, enter the following:
Environment=CLOUDFLARE_API_KEY="<your Cloudflare CA API key>"
Save the file and exit. Next, edit your Caddyfile:
I ended up having to install both RubyInstaller and add the necessary DevKit as the last step of the installation. From there, it should just be a case of gem install jekyll bundler and creating the Jekyll site in the normal manner (follow the first part of the guide linked at the start of this section if you need to).
Hopefully, if you’ve followed along this far, you should now have your own shiny new blog, hosted on your own server! Setting this up took me a single evening – not including the time I spent creating my own Jekyll layouts. But those are a topic for another time…