I made it to PC Gamer Magazine!!!

Two months ago you saw me excitedly posting about discovering my silly little Quest for Glory IV 3D Hexen mod had made it to Rock Paper Shotgun, one of the largest gaming news websites out there! Since that post more than 2,000 people have visited my site (already half way to 24,000 visitors!) and almost as many have watched my videos. My Star Trek Doom mod has been going pretty well too but much to my surprise my QFG4-3D mod which was originally only ever planned as just a test run to get my skills good enough for Star Trek Doom has ended up becoming the bigger and more famous hit lol! Now I know why the visitors keep coming…

Quest for Glory IV 3D Hexen has friggin made it to PC Gamer!! The largest PC gaming mag in the world!! And I didn’t just get some little mention.. oh no they went and bloody put my mod in their top 10 downloads of the month section at NUMBER ONE! It’s the only on in the top 10 filling more than half a page and with more than one picture. Some of the other top 10 mods are way better looking and more complex than mine so I’m just stunned!! All I can put it down to is good old nostalgia. People love QFG4 and they want to be taken back there in some way haha.

I’m in both the PC Gamer UK February edition and the PC Gamer US March edition. I’ve been getting PC Gamer UK since 1994! Never did I ever think that something of mine would ever appear on the pages of this mag.. something I’ve been collecting since I was a boy.. 🙂

PC Gamer UK & PC Gamer USA Scans

Blake’s Sanctum Has a New Home!

Found some good free hosting sites and have decided to go with x10Hosting. They have a very nice and short domain naming system as well so my site finally has a short and simple address lol!

http://blakessanctum.x10.mx/

 

I also decided to keep a mirror copy on another pretty good site called 000WebHost.

http://blakessanctum.comeze.com/

 

That way if anything happens to me there’s a good chance Blake’s Sanctum will live on. 🙂

I’m still left with a few frustrating problems…
Without access to my webring site I can’t remove the old site and setup re-directs. I have some limited access to the root folder so I can at least put some re-directs there but all the gaming, tv and mod subsections I can’t do anything about. 😦
There’s also literally a gazillion places I need to update the links to my site eg facebook groups, many forum posts and sigs, all my youtube videos, and all the posts on this blog… eeek!

Blake’s Sanctum In Trouble!

I figured this day was coming for a while now. Webring (the host of Blake’s Sanctum since 2008) have been in a pretty sorry state the last few years. I’m amazed their site is even still there as it’s clearly being neglected and surely isn’t profitable anymore. The website hosting uploader hasn’t worked in chrome, firefox and IE for 2 years now yet for some strange reason it still worked in Safari so I was able to continue working on the site however now even in safari the uploder has stopped working and I’ve lost access to my site. 😦 😦

Clearly it’s time to move. In fact I should have moved a while back at the first signs of trouble but oh well. I’m going to start looking for a new home for Blake’s Sanctum. Fans have offered me webspace in the past which I appreciate however I prefer not to have my site on a private server that be switched off the moment someone doesn’t pay a bill. So I’m going to go hunt for another free host. Once found I get to begin the long unpleasant process of moving the entire site and changing all my links across the many forums and videos out there to the new site. Fun!

I made it to Rock Paper Shotgun!

Well it’s been a pretty crazy 2 months since I released my Quest for Glory IV 3D Hexen and Star Trek Doom mod projects. I went overseas to Ko Samui Thailand for a month and around it I did my best to respond to the surge of attention my mods brought to this blog, my youtube channel and my website. Thank you every one for your feedback, it’s been amazing and certainly inspired me to pick up work on my mods again one day.

Blake’s Sanctum has passed the big 20,000 moment and its now already closing in on 21k. This blog has shot up by 1000 hits including one crazy day where 600+ people visited. The mod videos have received over 4,000 hits. Just amazing!

As I posted about the mods in various facebook groups and forums there were many surges in visitors but the biggest of all came from a wonderful man named Richard Cobbett. I’ve posted about him before over the years as he was responsible for showing Quest for Glory to a huge audience on two occasions when he first ensured QFG4 made it into the 2012 PC Gamer UK top 100 Games of all time list and then second posted an awesome 2 page spread on QFG4 in 2013 once again in PC Gamer UK.

Well now after finding out about and even playing my QFGIV 3D mod he decided to do a massive article on Rock, Paper, Shotgun all about my mod. Rock, Paper, Shotgun has got to be one of the biggest gaming news sites out there! I’ve read many an article there over the years so for my silly little mod to be covered on their site is just a nerdy dream come true lol!

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Thank you Richard! I work hard to promote and ensure QFG is never forgotten but I’ll never have the global reach you have so the fact you do the same thing for QFG on sites like this and in the huge PC Gamer mags is just wonderful.

Star Trek Doom Project (GZDoom Doom 2 mod)

Wow guys, things have really taken off in the week since my Quest for Glory IV 3D (ZDoom Hexen Mod) announcement. The site has reached over 19,000hits, this blog has also had hundreds of hits and same with my QFG4-3D videos! Thanks to everyone for your support and kind comments on the forums, facebook & videos.

So now the time has finally come to announce the second of my 2 big projects that I’ve been secretly working on over the last 2 years, the resurrection of my old Star Trek Doom project!

I originally worked on and off the Star Trek Doom Project from 1997 to 2012. I had almost all but given up on ever working on it properly again but people just kept contacting me about it over the years and I finally decided to really go for it again! So I resumed the project in 2016 and have totally redesigned & remastered EVERYTHING for GZDoom.

The year is 2371 and the Enterprise-D is in its seventh year of service (Between Season 7 & Generations Film), you play a young junior Lieutenant sent out to test upgrades on a shuttlecraft when a futuristic Borg cube emerges from a temporal portal launching a devastating attack on the Enterprise. After seeing the Borg Cube destroyed by Species 8472 emerging from the same time portal you decide to return to the Enterprise to try and help take back the ship. The game will take you to all your favourite places around the Enterprise and even on to a Borg cube! Obviously since such events are not possible in the canon/prime timeline I had to do some ‘creative thinking’ story wise to make it happen (basically I had to do a JJ Abrams lol) which hopefully diehards will be okay with since after all this is just a bit of fun! 🙂

My goal has always been to create a wild adventure on the Enterprise D that has you believing you’re there (well at least in the boundaries of the ancient Doom engine lol), and I’m happy to say the project reboot has been a success! All old areas, monsters and weapons have been rebuilt 10x better, many new areas have been added, and I’ve completely finished everything I wanted to do for my first public demo. Hope you all enjoy this first public demo below. Be warned that it will likely be a long time before there’s another demo, I’ve spent nearly 2 years on these 2 projects and have sacrificed a lot. I’m burnt out & want to do other things, including getting back to PLAYING games instead of making them lol!


For more information, more screenshots, animations+descriptions of all weapons & monsters you’ll face, and of course the download links for the demo and required files check out my STDoom website here:

Blake’s Sanctum – Star Trek Doom Homepage

If you just want to see the game without all the hassle then here’s a playthrough/walkthrough video series I made..

Part 1 – Type 7 Shuttle, Transporter Room, Turbolift, Corridors, Holodeck, Jefferies Tubes, Shuttle Bay, Type 6 Shuttle & Borg Cube Arrvial.

Part 2 – Borg Cube, Borg Queen boss fight, Enterprise D Bridge & EARLY DRAFT Engineering Species 8472 boss fight.

Quest for Glory IV 3D (ZDoom Hexen mod)

The time has finally come to announce the first of my 2 big projects that I’ve been secretly working on over the last 2 years, Quest for Glory IV 3D!

QFG4 3D is a total conversion single player 19 map mod for the classic game Hexen with the ZDoom enhancement. The mod contains new levels, textures, decoration, weapons, monsters, NPCs, cutscenes, music & sounds taking players on an old-school linear 3D action adventure set in the world and story of the great classic Sierra game Quest for Glory IV – Shadows of Darkness. I worked on QFG4 3D to retrain myself in Doom editing skills so I could return to my old labor of love, the Star Trek Doom Project.

Before anyone else says it I’d like to say that QFG4 doesn’t need to be in 3D, nor is my project an attempt to convert every single part of the game to 3D (if you want to do everything in QFG4 then go play QFG4 haha). I created QFG4 3D just for fun and to see if I could actually do it lol. Plus it was rather fun to create new areas/views not seen in the original game (eg I show more of the town & give you 360 degree views of each original game location). So if others happen to enjoy this project too then that’s a bonus, but if you’re not a fan of retro gaming & graphics then this probably isn’t going to be of much interest to you.

I used the old Hexen/Doom engine as I lack the graphic & programming talents to use a modern game engine, plus I wanted it to retain the look at feel of the era when QFG4 came out. However the ZDoom/GZDoom extension updates the old engine quite a bit to use true 3D, OpenGL effects & now in 2016 it even supports VR! So if you ever wanted to walk around Mordavia as if you’re there then this is your chance (at least until someone else does a much better job haha).

Hope you enjoy this first demo below. Be warned that it will likely be a long time before there’s another demo, I’ve spent nearly 2 years on these 2 projects and have sacrificed a lot. I’m burnt out & want to do other things, including getting back to PLAYING games instead of making them lol!


For more information, more screenshots, animations+descriptions of all weapons & monsters you’ll face, and of course the download links for the demo and required files check out my QFG4 3D website here:

Blake’s Sanctum – Quest for Glory 4 3D Homepage

If you just want to see the game without all the hassle then here’s a playthrough/walkthrough video series I made..

Part 1 – Character Selection, Dark One Cave, Swamp, South Western Forest & Rusalka Lake.

Part 2 – Rusalka Lake, North Western Forest, Borgov Castle Gate, Town Gate, Exploring Town, Burgomeister Office, General Store & Adventurers Guild.

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MASSIVE Site Update

Wow.. over 18,000 visitors to Blake’s Sanctum now! And quite a bit of increased traffic to this blog as well! 🙂

I looked at a screenshot of the website that I took at the end of 2014 and saw that there had been around 14,000 visitors over the history of the site at the meaning 4,000 people had visited this site over the last 2 years which was an amazing increase, but then I found another screenshot I took towards the end of 2015 showing the counter at around 15,000 which means that 2015 was just another year for the site and it was in fact this year that things exploded with 3,000 visitors. I have no idea why considering I hadn’t worked on the site since 2014! It hasn’t been a great 2 years in real life, health troubles, a long term relationship breakdown and a few other dramas certainly slowed me down a lot. But I’m back now and have been very busy over the last 3 months working on the site again.

As posted previously I’ve recently released a brand new Star Trek Gaming page which is probably now the largest section on my site with a huge tribute list of fan projects. I then went and updated every other gaming section on the site with new game tributes, better existing game tributes, more screens, more videos, more long lost demos, and navigation upgrades. If you visit your favourite section of the site, odds are you’ll find some new stuff there! 🙂

Thank you everyone for your support, I’m now going to upgrade my youtube channel and then finally release my 2 big mod projects to the world!

Here’s my complete list of changes:


Games Section
Changes made to existing content:
General – Contents menu added.
General – All back buttons changed to utilise HTML bookmarks. Now users don’t have to re-scroll down the entire page constantly! 🙂
General – Fixed some missing slashes in code.


Age of Wonders Series
New AoW related projects found:
Last Days of Old Earth – New game similar to AoW & MoM
Thea: The Awakening – New game similar to AoW & MoM without tactical combat
Dominions Series – Great retro looking series similar to AoW & MoM
Conquest of Elysium Series – Retro looking series (created by Dominions team) similar to AoW & MoM
Armello – New game similar to AoW & MoM without tactical combat
Chaos Reborn – Game similar to AoW, HoMM & King’s Bounty

Changes made to existing AoW content:
General – Contents menu added.
General – All back buttons changed to utilise HTML bookmarks. Now users don’t have to re-scroll down the entire page constantly! 🙂
General – Fixed some missing slashes in code.
General – Added Good Old Games buy links to all games.
AoW1 – Added download link to Community Content pack (heaps of maps & campaigns).


Babylon 5 Games
New B5 related projects added:
Babylon 5 Into The Fire – Someone leaked to the public the original unfinished Sierra game!
Babylon 5 Stardrive – Total Conversion mod for Stardrive. Thankyou to Anibal for the tip!
Babylon 5 Civilization 4 Final Frontier mod – TC mod for Civilization IV Beyond The Sword Final Frontier. THIS is the Babylon 5 galaxy conquering strategy game fans have always wanted!

Changes made to existing B5 content:
General – Contents menu added.
General – All back buttons changed to utilise HTML bookmarks. Now users don’t have to re-scroll down the entire page constantly! 🙂
General – Fixed some missing slashes in code.
General – Added Good Old Games & Steam buy links to mods requiring a base game.


Command & Conquer Series
New C&C related projects added:
C&C All Stars – Cool Tiberium & Red Alert Crossover Total Conversion Mod for C&C Generals.

Changes made to existing C&C content:
General – Contents menu added.
General – All back buttons changed to utilise HTML bookmarks. Now users don’t have to re-scroll down the entire page constantly! 🙂
General – Fixed some missing slashes in code.
RA2 – Added Good Old Games vote links.
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New Star Trek Games Section

It’s been a long time since I last announced a new section for my website (Dec 2014 in fact!) as my health hasn’t been too good and what little energy I’ve had over the last year and half I’ve devoted to my Doom Engine projects which I’ll be releasing soon. However now it’s time to announce the release of a big new section that’s been a very long time coming, my Blake’s Sanctum – Star Trek Games page!

This new section tributes all my favourite Star Trek games that I’ve either played or plan to play. For some of the classic adventure Trek games that I grew up playing I have done massive muti page tributes breaking down all the missions with maps, pictures, hints & tips.

As usual I’ve also done a massive tribute to many awesome fan games & mods relating to Star Trek. There’s a gazillion Star Trek fan projects out there so I’m probably only scratching the surface of them all at the moment, yet already this new section rivals some of my biggest sections of the site (QFG, Dune & MoM) for content. In fact considering that multiple games in the list have huge multi page mission breakdowns this probably is the biggest section now!

Based on feedback from fans I’ve also looked at improving site navigation. This new section uses a simple contents list at the top with bookmark links. I’ve also changed all the back buttons to take you back to the section you were just in (eg hitting back on an official ST game page takes you back to the official list while backing out of a fan game page takes back to the fan game area). So now users won’t have to scroll through my massive lists to get back to where they were lol!

Now I’m going to apply these nav upgrades to the rest of the site and also add a little bit of new content to each section based on new fan games/mods people have contacted me about over the last year or 2. Then I plan to do a big upgrade of my youtube channel to employ ‘End Referral Cards’ and record some new videos for the channel. Then I will release my 2 big doom engine projects to the world! Then I’m taking a big break to play games, I haven’t played games properly in nearly 2 years and it’s really bugging me lol! Being creative and doing your own mod projects is fun but its very draining (so now I personally understand why so many fail), I miss just sitting back and letting a game take me on an adventure.

Anyway I hope you all enjoy this new section! Worked my ass off on it lol! 🙂



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Big things Coming To Blake’s Sanctum

Wow 17,000 visitors to Blake’s Sanctum!! Quite a few visitors stopping by here too. Thanks guys it’s great to see! 🙂 Make’s me feel bad that I haven’t added any big new content to the site in over a year and a half!
.

So here’s some news! Technically I have been adding big new content to the site for a while, it’s just that most of it is hidden right now. 😉 For the last year and a half I’ve been working on 2 very big Doom engine mod projects. I’ll leave them as a surprise for now and just post 2 teaser shots below (although fans of these respective genres should easily recognise the content without me having to tell them hehe). Project 1 is a recent idea based on a classic Sierra game which is now finished and ready for release to the public! Project 2 is a total remake of an old favourite project of mine with lots of new content and is about 1-2 months away from completion.

Once finished I’ll release them both to the world via new sections to the website, videos, pictures and yes even public demos for download. I’m also working on a biiig upgrade to my youtube channel content, and updating other sections of the website with new fan project tributes thanks to lots of helpful feedback from you guys. Busy times!

Project 1

Project 2

Final Fantasy 15 Trailers

Woot! 16,000 visitors to Blake’s Sanctum now! 🙂

Hey everyone! Regular visitors might be thinking “hey he didn’t do his usual anual tradition of adding 3 new sections to the site in 2015?” lol. Well technically the 2014 updates too so long that they bled into 2015 anyway, but the main reason is that I’ve spent the last 9 months working on 2 very special projects. They will lead into new sections on the website and then I’ll get back to gaming will will lead to more new sections later this year.

In the meantime I’ve got some Final Fantasy news. I’ve recently been watching all the up and coming Final Fantasy 15 gameplay trailers out there and have been just blown away. They’ve really taken a page out of Elder Scrolls and created a giant detailed realistic world filled with incredible creatures living in the lakes, forests & mountains! I also like the design direction with a sort of alternative modern day world with cities and cars being invaded by an army of futuristic Templar knights & crusaders.

Check out the 4 Videos below:


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