Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Restaurant City - New 'Drinks' recipes & option to serve more dishes

Playfish's Restaurant City has just introduced a new drinks recipes, and thus the customers will now want drinks as well!

The drinks recipes currently available are
1) Glass of water
2) Expresso
3) Coffee
4) Tea (yes they introduce coffee beans and tea leaves!)
5) Chocolate milkshake
6) Strawberry milkshake
7) Lemonade (they introduce water and ice ingredients too!)
8) Peach ice tea (yes, you are right, peach too!)
9) Bubble tea
10) Fruit smoothie

The drinks are not served from stoves, i.e. unlike the traditional category of foods. The drinks are 'dispense' from new functional furniture, i.e. the drinks fridge and soda dispenser (shown below). The waiter and waitress will need access to the fridge or dispenser in order to get the drinks for the customers.

Other than drinks, Playfish has also allowed for more than 1 dish to be served per category. Thus those who have more than 1 dish at level 10, can enjoy more gourmet points while seeing more varieties of food served in the restaurant!

Yeah, the good thing about Playfish games is that there are constant updates, that makes the game more fun to play with.

See also:
- Restaurant City is up! Added Photo Feed and Gourmet Street

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Fishing in Pet Society - New Function!

Pet Society has yet another new function after their recent garden / seeds planting addons. This time round it is a fishing pond where players can bait and fish different types of fishes! I must say that Playfish is quite innovative in their game designs. Quoting directly from Pet Society :
Go fishing in Pet Society! After a hard day of shopping, visiting friends, racing in the stadium and tending to your garden, we thought your pet might appreciate a little rest and relaxation. And what could be a better way to rest and relax than grabbing a fishing rod and some bait (something from the food shop will do) and heading out to the all new fishing pond in the middle of town to see what you can catch?

Once you've caught your fish you can put them in an aquarium in your home, so any visitors can see your fish collection. There are loads of different fish to find but lots of fish will only eat a particular type of bait, so try experimenting with all kinds of different foods.
Well, that seems nice. When I opened the program and got a new message alert, I know they have added new things.

Yupz you can buy fish tanks of different sizes and keep the fishes you got in them. It is sort of fun to see these new captures floating around in the tank. The darwback is that players will need to spend more coins to get fish baits. I got a squid, a starfish, and an empty bottle so far.

Fishing itself is not difficult. It is just a three step process of 1st click to activate the fish bait and throw out the fishing line. The second step is to click the pet (just once) when the fish bites. If you see splashing water, that means the fish is struggling and you must not click the pet. Else the fish will get away. I wasted two home grown banana because of this mistake. When the fish is nto struggling, keep clicking on the pet and soon you will see your haul!

The fishes don't sell for much currently, unlike the fruits from trees in the garden. Oh well, the fun is not to make coins, but in fishing! Have fun trying out fishing!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Geo Challenge on Facebook - by Playfish

After playing two great games (Pet Society and Restaurant City) by Playfish, it is not hard to persuade me to try out another of their older games on Facebook - Geo Challenge.

Geo Challenge is bascially a test of social geographical knowledge, i.e. countries, maps, cities, famous spots. here's the starting screen of the game. Do note that you need to complete all the tests before a score is given. If you quit the test halfway, you will need to restart from the 1st test.

The first of the three tests is Suitcase Shuffle, a test of knowledge about the different flags of the country. As time pass, the 'wrong answers' would fade out, leaving you with a choice among three remaining flags. Normally the harder questions will give more points, but difficulty is subjective I suppose. I always get mix up when I get flags of three horizontal stripes.

After the test, the scores will be tabulated. Players will gain extra points if they get the correct answers fast. Answering many correct questions in one go will also entitle the player to extra time (about 5 seconds I think). The next test is Map Mayhem which is a test of the location of the famous spots.

The last test is the City Blitz, where players need to locate the city on the world map. The more accurate you pin the city, the more points you get. If the players select the USA or Europe options, they get other tests.

The different points at the end of the game will entitle the players to 'ranks' and also trophies. Overall the game is not too bad, since it helps to improve my geographical knowledge. In terms of complexity I will still stick of Pet Society or Restaurant City though. :)

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Google Chrome OS vs Microsoft OS!

There are plenty of discussions in the Internet about this coming big fight between the two IT giants - Google and Microsoft, over the Operating System space. Official news can be found on Google's blog, while there are plenty of other traditional news coverage, e.g. New York Times, and Channel Newsasia. Google's Chrome OS is targeting at netbooks with this new open source, light weight OS.

It is not surprising that Google is coming into this OS space. After Android, they would have had some experience in OS development. Moreover, Google started as an Internet based company more than the traditional desktop / work space based company, and thus its experience in Internet applications should naturally lead it to the main applications - Operating Systems.

What will be more interesting (other than the actual Chrome OS) is how Google plans to market this new OS. Google's Click Thru Rate based online advertising has completely changed the online adverts space. Their algo for their search, with a simple search site, has also changed search engine market, till the extent that the word 'google' has now morphed into a verb associated with the phrase 'online search'. Google's maps applications created mash-ups, not just for our terrestrial maps, but for the sky and the seas as well. Google's innovation for the Web has created deep ripples and shaped the Internet of today.

So how Google markets and 'sells' its OS will become a very important case study for those who plan to sell software linked to the Internet, and that is a huge market. Who will be its major partners? Which PC maker will be the first to adopt the OS shipped with its netbooks? Which government / major corporation will be the first to announce a complete changeover of its operating system to Chrome OS?

Of course, there is also the other angle of looking at this news; is Google turning into the next 'evil empire', whose applications and services reaches into every aspect of your life, and knows every single online activity you have done? Google Chrome running on Google Chrome OS, with Google Apps and such...scary?

Monday, July 6, 2009

Creating a YouTube Account - The First Time...

I've never uploaded any video clips and thus did not have a YouTube account. Recently there was an opportunity to take some pretty interesting Science related video and thus tonight I tried creating my very first YouTube video!

The process is simple, and that explains why the huge popularity with self created videos. The process is made simpler if you already have a Google account.

The process of uploading video is also simple. My video upload took nearly 10 minutes for a mere 15 seconds clip because I didn't know how to compress it accordingly. I'm sure there are ways of compressing the raw clip taken from digital camera into more user friendly files.

And so viola, here's the completed product! If you want to look at the Tesla Coil demonstration at the Science Centre, just click on the picture below to bring you to the YouTube page.