Archive for the 'General' Category

The forum will return to donation requirement this evening

Wednesday, December 17th, 2014 by Mr.Mouse

The 4 month period of free forum registration is over this evening. If you haven’t done already, register there now! After that, registration will be limited to donation of 5 euros.

MultiEx Commander 4.5.1 free download

Thursday, September 11th, 2014 by Mr.Mouse

As part of the 25th Anniversary of XeNTaX you can now download MultiEx Commander for free without donation first. Go here!

25 years of XeNTaX! Celebrate with free forum access!

Sunday, August 10th, 2014 by Mr.Mouse

25 years it has been since XeNTaX started as a Commodore 64 scene graphics/demo group. A very short history of what followed you can find here. Of course, we want to celebrate, and the first thing to happen this summer: free forum access for an indefinite period of time!  So if you were not registered yet, or were thinking about it, but did not want to donate that one time only 5 euros, now is the time to register! Register here now!

More strict rules!

Thursday, July 10th, 2014 by Mr.Mouse

Hi all, Just a new and stern warning to stop doing all kinds of illegal activity at the forum, which we sadly see happening too often now.

Read the rules at the forum. Also take heed of the following:

  1. No paying for hacking. The new stand is: do not ask to pay someone, nor ask to get paid.
  2. No modifications to games without authorization from the original copyright holders.
  3. Do not publicly share any illegal content.
  4. No public sharing of protected and copyrighted sources (like decryption keys and the like)
  5. Do not upload files that are the legal property of others.
  6. We are not a warez site. If you are a warez dude, then leave.
  7. If you doubt your conduct is legal, stop doing it.
  8. Do not screw others.
  9. No nudity. Not even of game characters. 

Our site is at risk if this continues. We will not allow it.

So if you feel the above applies to you, think carefully.

The Week at the Game Research Forum #15

Monday, April 28th, 2014 by Devilot

This week was refreshing. little work, lots of studying and now 8GB of RAM. I only need a new GPU and I am set :)

3D/2D Models

  • Heroes of the Storm: obscure format models (with an extractor already present somewhere else).
  • Fist of Fu: CE is still working on this game, with chrrox’s help.
  • Diablo III .app: still going strong and more progress is made.
  • Asphalt 8: .pig files are being worked on. No joke, nor pun, intended.
  • Project Blackout: Napoleon needs help for those models.

Audio File Formats

Graphic Formats

Game Archive Research

  •  .HVP: don’t worry, it’s not a STD :)
  • Wild Arms 3: SmashFan is doing some nice work on the BIN file.
  • Dark Souls 2: it was only a matter of time, I suppose, before someone would notice this game and its BHD archives ;)
  • LA Noire: even more interest for a longtime lurker of the forums.
  • GTA V: information on PCC files and help wanted.
  • TaoYuan: CriticalError is looking for script help for this game, in order to get everything.
  • The First Templar: necroposting, at least accordingly to the author.
  • Chao Ring: OBB file extraction help for this Android game.

Compressed files and methods

  • Wild Arms 3: additional information is provided on the compression method.

Game Localization

  • Telltale Games: working on the encrypted files.
  • Splinter Cell Blacklist: a small mistake with QuickBMS can lead to a serious disaster.
  • Final Fantasy X PS2: help for a translation in an unknown language is needed.

Noesis

  • No update since the 14th :(

Other Tools

  • No tools were released in the Tools section this week, I fear.

Why we need to ditch Metacritic as a source

Sunday, February 9th, 2014 by Mr.Mouse

On January the 19th we released the comprehensive analysis of the Metacritic website regarding their Games data. As a way to shed some light on the findings reported in that paper, I write this annotated blog. It will save you from having to read the 30 pages.

Introduction

The Metacritic website has a number of important flaws according to the Wikipedia page:

Metacritic:
• Converts each review into a percentage the site decides for itself
• Manually assesses the tone of reviews that have no explicit score and then assigns a quantitative score
• Refuses to reveal what weights are applied to which publications

Now, assuming the above is correct, this would make the data shown at Metacritic highly biased and far from the truth. Statistics dictate that you cannot apply scores at your own leisure based on subjective perception or using unvalidated methods and then call that a sophisticated meta-analysis. Therefore, it is time someone took a closer look at the data at Metacritic, in a descriptive way, to explore the data and see what comes up.

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Metacritic: Quantify Me paper released (30 pages!)

Sunday, January 19th, 2014 by Mr.Mouse

Today we release the next chapter in the Quantify Me series: Metacritic. Having done an analysis of the CSDb first (CSDb: Quantify Me) in July 2010 and then Mobygames (Mobygames: Quantify Me) at the end of December 2012, the attention has turned to the games listed at Metacritic. This one turned out to big a big analysis, collecting data almost non-stop from the Metacritic website between the 25th of August 2013 and the 10th of September 2013. Then cleaning of the database and actual analyses took another lengthy period of time, as this needed to be done late in the evenings, as much as possible. Finally the first chapter of this endeavor is here. The conclusion of this 30 page paper (which you can get here as PDF) is as follows:

The data at Metacritic leaves much to be desired and seems to be heavily biased. When critic scores do not comply with user scores in the majority of cases, which has been shown in this paper, and the selection of critics is seemingly under no formal control, the validity and accuracy of the data is low. Caution is necessary when using Metacritic information to guide your own decision to buy or not buy a game. Until there is more transparency on how this process takes place at Metacritic, more transparency on the flow of funding from which sources and the observed biases are removed, the database is of limited use for the end-users.

The week at the Game Research Forum #34

Sunday, August 25th, 2013 by Mr.Mouse

Let’s take a look at Week 34 at our lovely forum.What have they been up to? Click on “more” for the full article.

2D/3D models

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MobyGames: Quantify Me

Friday, December 28th, 2012 by Mr.Mouse

Taking data from MobyGames I have analyzed their information on games released since 1977 on many platforms in an attempt to make some historical sense of it all in a descriptive way. It is entitled MobyGames: Quantify Me. A brief quantitative analysis of the gaming era according to MobyGames. Below is the Abstract plus some key figures, but you are encouraged to read the full article here: MobyGames: Quantify Me 2012. Enjoy the read!

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Tools Blog lists 45 tools and counting!

Friday, November 23rd, 2012 by Mr.Mouse

I’ve completed the transition of the tools that were posted at the Tools Blog to the new custom field template. We now list 45 member-created game-mod tools, many of them custom created in response to visitor requests. I am positive this is just the tip of the iceberg, and there are many more tools posted throughout. We must list them all at the Tools Blog! Check also this post for a How-To.