No super update to Blake’s Sanctum in 2017


Hey guys,

As we close in on 29,000 visitors to Blake’s Sanctum and 4,000 visitors to this blog I’m sorry to announce that I won’t be doing my annual super update to all sections of the site this year. It’s normally a 1-3mth job and I just don’t have that kind of time at the moment. It’s not due to lack of content though as so many great people have sent me so many great fan projects to add to my various tribute lists so next years update will be MEGA!

However the good news is I will succeed in my old 3 new sections a year objective as I’ve recently completed the big Imperium Galactica Legacy section and I’m currently working on a Palm Kingdoms tribute section and some minor tributes to forgotten classics like Celtic Tales Balor of the Evil Eye and Legends of Pegasus.

The real activity though is happening on my Blake’s Sanctum youtube channel. Regular subscribers will have noticed that I’ve been uploading new a new video every weekend! Yup that’s 1 video a week. This is going to continue for while into 2018 as I’ve got a whole bunch of fun recent OpenRA Netbash videos and also recently completed my first ever lets play series and am currently cutting together the many episodes!

Oh and I have still done some minor updates to the site. Fans with a keen eye will notice all the welcome screens have been updated and some of my new sections are trialling an improved contents menu as the old one was just boring text.

So bottom line is there’s no super update but oh man is there plenty going on at Blake’s Sanctum haha! 🙂

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Netbash 1 & 2! Retro Gaming Multiplayer LAN Videos

Hey everyone 🙂

I don’t know about you guys but when I was a young man in the late 90s and early 2000s I loved meeting up with 3 or 4 mates, getting some booze & bad take away food, bringing our computers over and playing multiplayer games like Command & Conquer, Unreal Tournament, Counterstrike, and Civilization just to name a few. We nicknamed them ‘netbashes’ and had many over those years but sadly for whatever reason (grew up, got jobs, got girlfriends etc) we stopped doing them after 2001ish.

Well in 2017 we decided to bring back the netbash (possibly due to an early midlife crisis haha) and relive our youth playing some of these great old games. Thanks to the fan gaming and modding community its easier than ever to play some of these classic games on modern machines. OpenRA in particular is just an utterly brilliant and addictive way to relive C&C and Dune gaming. Since I already had a website and youtube channel devoted to retro gaming and mods I decided to start filming some of our netbash games to improve the content. Below are some of the videos of these great fan remakes and mods of great classic games!

Netbash 0 – NYE 2016
Didn’t have any New Years Eve plans for the first time ever (getting old lol) so I met up with my mate James to have dinner and drinks. After dinner we randomly decided to connect 2 computers and play some old games. The netbash was back! Although sadly I didn’t do any videos as this was totally unplanned lol!
Bash 0 naughty meal of choice: Outdoor BBQ Feast!

Netbash 1 – February 2017
James & I decided to test more games in preparation for a bigger netbash with more mates. After many painful hours we got the Red Alert 2 mod for the OpenRA development version working! We failed to get the Dune 2 classic mod working though. We then went on to have a really fun Tiberian Sun team game.
Bash 1 naughty meal of choice: Salsa’s Fresh Mex Grill!


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New Imperium Galactica Section!

Hi guys! We’ve passed 27,000 visitors at Blake’s Sanctum and are already half way there to 28,000! That’s nearly 10,000 up since this time last year which is just amazing! Thank you everyone for your support and kind messages. 🙂 Helps drown out the few who feel the need to tell me how much they hate my work. :/

Anyway it’s that time of the year again when I add a brand new section to Blake’s Sanctum. To celebrate Imperium Galactica’s 2017 resurrection on Steam & GoG I thought I’d finally do what I’ve been planning for years and create an Imperium Galactica Legacy section paying tribute to the original IG games along with any successful & sadly unsuccessful IG related fan projects out there to make sure that they are never forgotten and can inspire talented IG fans to create new IG projects in the future. I also created a list of other games out there that are similar to IG as while there’s nothing out there quite like IG there are still some pretty brilliant similar 4X games out there with in-depth planetary development. For this list I collected pics, vids, demos, and information for as many of the projects as possible.

Pictures:

Videos:
I’ve also created some videos as thanks to THQ Nordic upgrading IG2 and the awesome guys behind OpenIG you can now play the whole series in high resolutions looking better than they ever did back in the day.

I waffled on more than planned haha but I just love these games. 🙂 Hopefully they bring more new and returning fans to the series.

IG2

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Dune 2 HD Remakes Comparison & Skirmish Matches

Hi guys,

I’ve been busily working on some fun new video content for my big Dune Games section. I have installed the latest versions of all the big Dune 2 fan remakes and created videos giving a brief tour of their features and then (badly lol) played a skirmish match in each to put them through their paces.

OpenRA Dune 2 Classic Mod
Probably the most recent and rarely seen Dune 2 remake. OpenRA (a C&C and Red Alert engine rebuild) is extremely popular but because this mod only works with the Github development version of OpenRA it’s half impossible to get working. With some help from the devs my friends & I finally got it working. However our multiplayer match was over way too quickly so I decided to do a longer skirmish game to check out end game buildings & units too.


Dune 2 Legacy
By far the greatest Dune 2 remake of them all. Great graphical options, 3 sub houses (Fremen, Sardukar, Mercs), a map editor and loads of skirmish/multiplayer maps. They’ve added the Super Dune 2 Missions with new improved briefings so really the only feature still missing is support for Dune eXtended missions.


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Star Trek Doom & QFG4-3D Hexen NOT WORKING

Hi guys,

After receiving the frustrating news today that photobucket have disabled all offsite usage of their images stuffing up a huge amount of my website, blog and forum posts/links, I’ve now also discovered that due to recent updates to the GZDoom engine both my Star Trek Doom & QFG4-3D Hexen mods have stopped working. There are serious code errors I can’t fix and even if you’re able to get around these errors you still face a multitude of problems in-game. My music tracks aren’t playing, you get stupid Doom/Hexen score screens in-between levels, and my intermission and end game sequences are broken too. 😦

At this stage I have no idea how to fix these problems so I’m sorry to say both mods are currently unplayable unless you use older version of GZDoom such as GZDoom v1.8.2 which they were originally made and tested with. Sorry guys. 😦

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)

WARNING: This mod no longer works with the latest versions of GZDoom! Most of the music tracks don’t play (unless triggered by a script event), the sky’s are all wrong, it ignores my cluster settings and end up up with Doom story cr*p at the end of the demo instead of my stuff. Clearly it’s not liking my old MAPINFO and I’m stumped as to how to fix it. 😦 Until I resolve these issues I recommend you play my mod with GZDoom 1.8.2 or ZDoom 2.7.1. Apologies for the inconvenience.

If anyone can see the issue with my MAPINFO please let me know!

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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.