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Links to places I find interesting.  Your mileage may vary.

Ultracorps
This is the first web-based game I ever played, and in many ways it was the start of my involvement in the games industry.  I joined in the third beta round, followed it through the rest of beta, and saw it turn into a pay-to-play game on Microsoft's Gaming Zone.  Eventually, I left the game because of disagreements with how it was being managed.  Microsoft cancelled the project a few months after that, and for some years it was out of commission.  Unfortunately, the developing company (VR1) went out of business, but the good news is that the game was bought by Steve Jackson Games, who are now re-working it.  Hopefully, they will be able to realize the great potential that the game always had.

Evernight
This was my second beta project, made by the same people as Ultracorps.  I've done a number of betas since, but this was probably the best-run one that I ever participated in.  The game is alive and well as a pay-to-play web-based game, although I haven't had time to check in on it much lately.

In one of the more interesting twists I've seen in my time, the game has been bought by members of the player base.  Conceptually, that's a fairly revolutionary thing--not just modifying or spoofing official content (which is done all the time), but actually taking over ownership and continuing to develop it.  I wish the new owners all the luck in the world.

The Book of Zolton
I was so impressed with Evernight that I actually taught myself how to build web pages just so I could compile a guide for new players.  While it is no longer the definitive work on the game and its strategies that it once was, the folks at MadNergal are kind enough to keep it on the web and update it from time to time.

Quarter to Three
A game-industry site that has forums where I hang out on a regular basis.  It's one of those rare places on the web where you get more intelligent conversation, real insight, and humor than useless trolling and name-calling.

Blue's News
This is where I go for most of my gaming news.  They compile links to news articles related to gaming (mostly PC but some console) several times a day.  The links of the day are also a must-see on my daily browse.

Gamasutra.com
Another regular stop for me, Gamasutra is run by the Independent Game Developer's Association (IGDA) and publishes news items, articles on game development, events, and job listings.  It's a good place to keep a thumb on the pulse of the industry.

Pirates of the Burning Sea
Flying Labs are the folks who did Rails Across America (another project I was in the beta for).  I check in here from time to time to see how they're coming with this pirate-themed MMORPG.

Internet Movie Database
I go here on a fairly regular basis: when I see an actor in a film and go "Where have I seen that person before?", or when I can't quite come up with a name that's right on the tip of my tongue.  It's a very useful search site, although the results can sometimes be a little quirky.

Gamerankings.com
While officially a gathering of data on games, I find this site very useful as a portal for reviews.  Definitely a resource when you're looking for multiple perspectives on the same game.

Gamefaqs.com
I don't go here very often, but it's a good site when you've gotten stuck somewhere in a game and need to find out what it is you're missing.

Watercooler Games

One of my new stops in the game studies blog world.  Ian Bogost and Gonzalo Frasca, two of the authors of the site, do a lot of talking about games.  Frasca also does Ludology.org.

The Ludologist
Weblog of the first recipient of a Ph.D. in game studies, Dr. Jesper Juul.  Here is a small discussion I had with Dr. Espen Aarseth about game studies.

Jerz's Literacy Weblog
Blog of a professor at Seton Hill University.  It covers a lot more than just games, but that's what I go there for.  Here's another little discussion I was involved in.

Grand Text Auto
An academic group blog hosted out of Georgia Tech.  In spite of the site's title referencing one of the best-selling commercial games of all time, they seem to be more interested in interactive fiction.

Terra Nova
Yet another blog, this one more focused on persistent state multiple user spaces or "virtual worlds" if you will.  Fun to visit in part because Richard Bartle is a frequent participant.

The Order of the Stick
This is full-on geek stuff.  It's a comic strip about D&D characters, with lots of rules-based humor, but oddly addictive.

Penny Arcade
Also on the geek-comic tip.  If you haven't found this yet, and you're part of gamer culture, you need to check it out.  The comics, at least; the commentary is often worth ignoring.

The Chaos Engine
Private forums for people in the game industry.  If you're in the industry and interested in talking with other people in the industry behind closed doors, it's worth sending them an e-mail to get an account.


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