All posts by Jason MacAllister

Activision Party Continued

EminemHere’s a more thorough (although somewhat pessimistic) run-through of the acts at the Activision party, from my favorite game website, Kotaku. Also, I forgot to mention earlier one of the best parts of the evening: free beer, wine, and concession stand food! You could just walk up to any counter, order what you want, and they would ring you up for it. But then you could walk away without paying, with no fear of being tackled by a security guard! Later in the evening I think the Staples Center staff was anxious to charge Activision for as much food as they could, because they were literally walking up to people and handing them pretzels and boxed candy.

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Activision E3 Party 2010

will.i.am and UsherLast night’s Activision E3 party in LA was pretty freakin’ awesome. Usher, will.i.am, a bunch of renowned DJs, Tony Hawk, Jane’s Addiction, Soundgarden, Travis Barker (the drummer from Blink-182), the lead singer from Tool, an intense set from Eminem, Rihanna… and those are just the artists I recognized!

They also presented the best game trailer-watching experience I’ve ever had, with massive real-life pyrotechnics accompanying the gunfire and explosions as a helicopter blew stuff up on-screen for Call of Duty: Black Ops (all to a riveting score performed by a full live orchestra).

But the best experience of the night was shaking hands with LeVar Burton, famous for his role as Geordi La Forge on Star Trek and as the host of Reading Rainbow!!! We knew he would be at the show from a Tweet he posted earlier yesterday, and while at the show we found him standing on the dance floor directly in front of us! After causing enough ruckus, he came over and gave us handshakes and fist bumps. When we failed to take a picture with him due to the iPhone’s lack of a flash, he hand-signaled FOUR-POINT-OH to us as he melted back into the crowd (the soon-to-be-released iPhone 4 will have an LED flash built into its camera). Amazing.

Reading Rainbow

LASIK FTW!

I just got LASIK surgery yesterday! Amanda had suggested that I go to a free evaluation for LASIK while I’m out of work, so I had reluctantly scheduled one for yesterday at Saddleback Eye Center. I ended up being really happy with that facility, and they offered a discount for getting the surgery done that same day (so they don’t have to re-administer some of the eye tests). I was about ready to get it done, but Amanda talked me into shopping around at a few other facilities first before diving into it. I was going to be paying $4900 after discounts, and Amanda had only paid $3600 for hers. Hers was a different procedure (LASIK instead of PRK), but it still seemed like I might find a place that could be just as good for significantly cheaper.

But when I went into the office to explain my thinking to the staff, one of them told me she could shave another $800 off the cost by decreasing my 24-month open door policy (free visits and touch-ups) to a 6-month period (and touch-ups would no longer be free). This is the same kind of policy that the other offices offered anyway, so it was just what we wanted, and only a hundred dollars more than we were hoping to pay anyway!

So I got the surgery done then and there. It was a little scary once I was under the laser, but it was painless and quick. I started seeing pretty well last night, and at my post-op visit this morning I was already seeing better than 20/15! I need to put lubricating drops in my eyes for a year, but my eyes should be pretty much healed in another week or two. Hooray for clear vision!

Unfortunately, only now did I find out that I could get a LASIK@Home kit for only $99 plus shipping and handling:

lasik-home-four-easy-steps

Yes I’m joking, but no, this site is not a joke. Sadly.

Exciting Placement For Javaground Mobile Games

This is really old news, but it’s still pretty cool, so I wanted to throw it up here anyway. During the Apple iPhone 3.0 Firmware/SDK unveiling, one of our testers noticed that Apple had our Wheel of Fortune game installed on their demo iPhone. Projected on the big screen and everything! Here’s the screenshot that the tester captured:

applesdk-wof

Also – and again, old news – Kotaku had posted a brief article about the mobile titles 007: Top Agent and Ghostbusters coming to the iPhone. Ghostbusters was ported by one of my dev buddies at Javaground, and of course Top Agent is my baby. They’re both available now, but it’s still cool that Kotaku had announced the impending release of these titles.

Zombieland Success!

Coinciding with the Zombieland DVD and Blu-Ray release, the iPhone game I developed, iZombieland, is soaring on the charts! It’s currently ranked at #18 on the Top Paid Apps list (that’s out of ALL apps!), and my friend at Sony told me it reached #12 at one point! The game is getting some amazing love – there is an insert in the DVD advertising the game, and Apple will list the game in the “What’s Hot” section later in the week, which should boost it even higher! I feel like I need to buy the movie now, just to get the insert…

Also, this is the perfect opportunity for me to show off the Zombieland poster that our Javaground artists made for the game. It looks great, and features some of our favorite review quotes!

Zombieland Poster