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June/July 2008
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Postmortem - Square Enix's
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles:
My Life as a King
By Fumiaki Shiraishi

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a King was a WiiWare launch title in Japan, and sits somewhere between a strategy game and a god game. In this technical-oriented postmortem, lead programmer Fumiaki Shiraishi shares the ups and downs of implementing scripting for designers, the benefits of small file sizes, and the trouble with overblown AI.

Land of the Free
By Michael Zenke

Smaller, non-subscription MMOs have been slowly but surely making their way into the hearts and minds of the game community. But now, they're getting too big to ignore. Are tiny MMOs eating away at your subscribers? Michael Zenke here discusses the scope and influence of these new arrivals.

Intelligent Brawling
By Tom Smith

Those who don't learn from history are doomed to repeat it, and with that in mind, Tom Smith dissected the enemy AI of several competing 3D brawlers in order to discern what makes for intelligent looking enemies. The results are intriguing, at the least, and show what there is to gain by putting a magnifying glass to the work of others.

Interview: Masafumi Takada
By Brandon Sheffield

Masafumi Takada is the director of sound for Grasshopper Manufacture (Killer7, No More Heroes), and has worked for several other companies, including Sandlot (Earth Defense Force series) and Clover Studios (God Hand). Here, Takada reveals the rather conventional origins of his unconventional audio.

DEPARTMENTS/COLUMNS

Game Plan
Brandon Sheffield
The Hardcore Niche
Heads Up Display
Developer first-persons, Mars terraforming with Henk Rogers, MMO NPD data, and more.
Tool Box
Tom Carroll
Autodesk's Mudbox 1.0.7
The Inner Product
Noel Llopis
Implementing Deterministic
Pixel Pusher
Steve Theodore
Renaissance Fair
Design Of The Times
Soren Johnson
2D vs 3D
Aural Fixation
Jesse Harlin
The Power of the Sung Word
Arrested Development
Karsden Mörderhäschen
Beating Them at Their Own Game
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