Hey! Exciting stuff and I'm sure will take some getting used to, but with the need to communicate stuff within the group when our schedules don't always match up, we are looking to add some new elements to the way the website works. There is a new social element being integrated that will allow the return of Forums as well as new exciting features such as groups and documents. Groups will allow us to create a social gathering around a specific game and have discussions in the group that are related things that need to be passed between players when the other players aren't online. Also, documents will add a Wiki style page that can be collaboratively edited within the group. This should make keeping the games we play easier to group everything we need to share together and make it easier to find what you are looking for.
As always, the blog system still remains for everyone to publish a story or a thought on upcoming events that will be published outside the group if so chosen, and the forum is for discussions where a social group doesn't fit.
So, buddy up and group with your fellow gamers and use these new tools to kick some ass!
The Chicago based servers we are using are being moved to improve performance. The downtime is expected for a 24 hour period only on the 26th. Please visit the members information page for the backup server address.
In an effort to prevent abuse of our site and the benefits our group has to offer, there obviously needs to be a place for members to get access to our information not intended for the general public. As such, a new page has been added to the blog that will contain all the membership information from servers, common links and downloads that we don't was everyone to have access to.
If you are a member you must be logged into the site and have a role of a contributor or higher in order to have the menu appear on the top navigation or to follow this link... http://di-gaming.org/members/
Digital Insanity has now added a Feed The Beast server for advanced Minecraft game play. This is a heavily modded, highly technical version of Minecraft with hundreds of new items and crafting recipes. Play can include things such as solar panels feeding battery banks that will power pumps that will transport items from a process unit that converts wood into coal into a chest for storage. It can get pretty wild the amount of automation that can be put together. Download the client and give it a try at http://feed-the-beast.com/
Even though it is still in Closed Beta, EA has announced that Pre-Orders are available for SimCity. The game has been completely redesigned from the bottom up and brought into modern gaming with the addition of a beautiful 3D interface called GlassBox and an online social experience by linking cities into a world and cities being able to share commodities or even problems with neighbors owned by other players. The game has an extreme amount of depth and detail from previews that have been released so far and is a welcome refresh to the old favorite simulator from my early PC gaming days. I, for one, cannot wait for the release which has some conflicting dates out there. I have seen as early as February and possibly also March 5th. Not sure which is accurate but the closer we get to the date I am sure it will become more apparent.
On a side note, EA has started to pull a stunt with most new games where they add in-game bonus content that doesn't seem to account for much and charge a completely over valued price for it. If you order the game as a Limited Edition, it runs $59.99 which is typical for a game and it still comes with bonus content for pre-ordering, but there is a Deluxe Edition for $79.99 that adds 3 map packs mostly. For the $20 increase in price, I am not sure this is worth it. If EA is trying to trick people into paying $80 a game, they are insane. They have pulled similar stunts on Crysis 3's upcoming release and the Battlefield 2 Premium Edition to get the extra map packs seems steep at $50 for 4 map packs above the original Limited Edition maps. Even Modern Warfare only charged up to $6 a map pack and EA wants double that per map. They may own some great franchises but they are turning into a corporate money machine and less of a game developer.
I won't let their tactics sway me from the games I am interested in and I will settle for forgoing the content that I really could care less about and they are lucky to get that from me.
Our web presence has been improved a little with the addition of 3 new domain names. Now Digital Insanity will also be associated with the domains di-games.com, di-gamers.com and digitalinsanitygaming.com. Along with this I am updating the other addresses for service to include most of the new domains such as our Google Apps, TeamSpeak and Minecraft Servers.
I am not sure if everyone is aware, but with the ownership of a domain, email services are available and I have hosted them with Google. If any members are interested in a branded email address please contact me and I will be happy to add an account for you. These accounts will include every *DI* domain so you will have your choice of the address you wish to use. With the Google account comes shared access to a group Calendar, Documents and Sites.
For the purpose of security, connectivity and just so I don't need to bog down my gaming bandwidth to put up with the troubles of hosting a domain from my home connection, I have been working toward putting the group's web presence onto a legitimate host server. There is a little bit of learning how they do things versus how I have historically done them, there are some limitations to what can be done that I hope to triumph over and there is opportunity to explore new ways of doing things. At the core, I want to try and leave much of our content still on the site if I can, but I am looking at trying to be more integrated between platforms especially with a single login. I will be testing over the next few months so keep in mind things may change on different areas of the site. One thing I am sure I have settled on is the use of WordPress which has been the primary front end for a while now. I would suggest that anything you wish to share should be published through the blog since I will try to leave that content alone. If you have anything for the forum, I would suggest holding off for now.
Keep in mind, with the migration, it appears none of the logins have carried over and you will be required to re-apply to the site.
I've been working on some updates to the Minecraft server by implementing McMyAdmin to assist in managing the server. Mojang and team have been putting out regular updates and I would like to keep up better with the official releases especially so that those users with official accounts or play on other servers and have updated their clients already will not need to try and downgrade just to play on ours. My goal is to make the server available to as many users as I can even tho the process of updating a client for offline mode can be painful, the official client is much easier.
Along with the server updates, i am introducing a new world scheme where the primary world is using the latest biome seed and will serve as the junction between worlds. I have been able to find a fairly efficient way to move world to world using a portal room and will implement this across the server.
Plan is that the primary world is a build world open to both survival or creative. I would suggest that near spawn only class A projects be put up since this will be the primary exposure that new users will be exposed to.
In the secondary worlds, there will be two strictly creative and another that is strictly survival. Those will be based on existing worlds Spud, Smooth and Monkey.
The old server maps will also exist like Rusty, Palm as well as at times downloaded maps from other servers such as ZackScottGames Scotland and Nova or Fyre UK 100,000 user map.
I am open for suggestions and welcome all to the changes and hope to increase participation on the server.