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  B.H.E. W.I.N.N.E.R.S.! 10:15 AM -- Wed October 19, 2011  

The B.H.E. Tournament is now over, and we can crown some winners! Of course, the most winnerer person was none other than ME! You like my acronyms, you really like my acronyms! Well, that was kind of a tortured reference... anyway, I am stepping aside despite enjoying the positive response to my acronyms (and being super surprised!).

That makes the winner Flutechick with 50 Yerfbucks! The second place was a tie between Lennyjaxn and Hammered. And while I should end it there with two second places, why not keep it rolling and say that third place was a tie between Cheeselord and BryanSNK. Enjoy your yerfbucks.

And to them and everybody else, you probably guessed this, but the B.H.E. tournament scores will keep accumulating all month, so it might behoove you to keep earning points.
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  Boys Have Entertainment! 06:34 PM -- Tue October 18, 2011  

Our latest Boys' Life game is out just in time for the Best Holiday Ever! It's a... let's see... high-speed survival platformer? It's fun, it's fast, it's brutal (touch anything bad and DIE), yet very forgiving (super short levels and instant respawn). Plus it has ghosts that show you how you failed! And sheep.
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  Bring Healthy Eyes! Winners! 12:30 PM -- Tue October 18, 2011  

The Bring Healthy Eyes contest has concluded! And the winners are... Cheeselord in 1st place, Sonicchaos1993 in 2nd place, and... what's this? ME! in 3rd place! I suppose I could bow out though... making Sol Hunt third place!

As always, I point out that you should be still working to max out your score in Bring Healthy Eyes. The scoreboard will remain up all month and it might serve a purpose.

B.H.E, the TAG contest, will be ending tomorrow. After that, our next deadline is for both the Costume Contest and Bark, Howl, Etc., on the 23rd. We've got no costumes yet, so if you enter, you win! If you send anything for any of the BHE contests, I will reply immediately, so if you haven't heard from me, I haven't gotten your email.
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  Bark, Howl, Etc.! 09:53 AM -- Sun October 16, 2011  

Another contest has arrived!

We're covering all the bases this year, so if you're an audio expert, now you have a chance to win with your skills! Check it out.

In upcoming deadline news, there are 2 days until Bring Healthy Eyes wraps up, so get to the top! There are 3 days until the end of B.H.E. (the awkwardly named contest, not the entire event) so make sure you keep playing that every day. And you better be working on your costume! There's one week left for Behold Hamumians Enrobed, and no entries yet!

If you want to keep track of all the deadlines, visit the BHE page for a handy chart. It's always updated when new events begin.
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  Beware Hamumu's Errors! 03:46 PM -- Sat October 15, 2011  

Hey, remember how the updated version of Dr. Lunatic came out earlier this week? Well, at long last, the source code is available! You can download it if you own the game, via My Downloads.

A few comments on this. First of all, only the source code is free to use. The sound, graphics, and music are not. You can either make your own graphics and sound, or make an EXE that you share with people who already own Dr. Lunatic to use with their files. Let me repeat that one more time: You cannot distribute the sound, graphics, and music of Dr. Lunatic to anyone! You can share the demo freely, but only in its full, unmodified form.

Second issue: You can do whatever you want with the code! Go nuts and enjoy. You can use it in commercial products if it's somehow useful for that. I'd love a credit in your creation, but you don't have to give it.

Third issue: It's very bad code. Yikes. Don't make fun of me. It is actually the first "full-sized" game I ever wrote, about 15 years ago.

Fourth issue: I offer no help whatsoever. Please don't ask me about the giant stream of errors you get trying to compile it. I'll tell you this: It was built with Allegro v4.4, and it's written in C++. I was able to compile it with MSVC8, which is free from Microsoft. I believe SpaceManiac used MINGW, also free. So good luck!

I don't know what you can accomplish with this odd assemblage of code, but that's up to you to figure out. Have fun!
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  Booty? Hauled, Everybody! 10:54 AM -- Thu October 13, 2011  

So, it's a week later and the booty has been hauled. The top scoring booty haulers are...

Pete with 55910!

Sonicchaos1993 with 48296!

And Stop its hammer time with 47705!

(So sad for BryanSNK with 47569... two more Kiwis and he'd be there!) So, Yerfbucks are being dished out, and to all of you, winners or not, keep on hauling booty. You may find there's a good reason to be as high up on that chart as possible later...
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  Bots, Hacking, Etc. 09:23 PM -- Wed October 12, 2011  

Because this kind of thing happens regularly (and more than ever lately!), I want to share my stance on this stuff. If you are using a bot on Hamumu for any purpose, or trying to hack into the site, you are being at best extremely annoying and at worst extremely destructive.

It's not cool, it's not helpful, it's not a funny prank, and it breaks games for everybody as well as forcing me to spend my time developing enhanced security rather than more games. It wastes the bandwidth I pay for, it ruins the fun of games people want to play, it wastes my time making blocks to prevent it. I mean we can see it happen in the people getting mad about the bot playing Great Pumpkin's Field today. You're ruining the game for people and turning people off of my site. If you have something against me and want to hurt me, you're doing the right thing. If you want to help me out and help the community in some way, you're doing it wrong.

At various times in the past I've had a bunch of people come to me and say they hacked something on the site (usually meaning they found a file that's not supposed to be seen publicly), and they think they're helping me. You're NOT HELPING. The only people who have ever "hacked" this site are the people who thought they were helping me out. I don't need to put in safeguards for what you're doing because you're the only one doing it! If you'd stop "helping me", no such safeguards would be needed!

And to clarify, that doesn't mean you shouldn't point out if you see something broken or you stumble across something that you shouldn't be able to get into. By all means, let me know. I can't verify everything on the site myself and I rely on reports from the users. This is a message for people who are performing attacks on my site and my games, not people who innocently hit something.

It's a terrible dirty feeling to discover someone hacking around the site. Compare it to your house. Do you want masked people prowling around your yard just testing all the window locks for you? Or stealing your car to point out to you that you shouldn't have left the keys in it?

I can't tell you how crappy my day is when I spend a couple hours of it at war with one of my friends instead of making fun stuff. I understand that I have to battle people. Spammers show up, angry ex-members appear and try to trash the site. Those are fights I'm happy to have, I will slay the evil (well, I'd rather nobody attacked me, but I feel good about taking them down). But when my friends show up and force me to engage them in an electronic cat & mouse game, it's absolutely infuriating! Why am I wasting my time fighting battles against the very people who supposedly appreciate what I do?

So this isn't a message for evil people who want to mess with my site. Those people will do bad things because they want bad things to happen. This is a big, bold, strongly worded message to all you young programmers who are using my site as a testbed for your programs, all you white-hat hackers who are looking for exploits, and all you petty vandals who just want to get some "lulz" (hello, comment spammers), everybody who thinks they're helping or just having fun via non-sanctioned channels. What you're doing is harmful to me and to the community at large. I hope people will sign on to this in the comments, but the recent Great Pumpkin thread should be evidence enough. People don't like what you're doing, and I know I don't like it.

Key tip: If you want to help somebody, ask them if you can help. If you have to do your helping in the shadows behind their back, odds are they don't want you doing it. I'm not EA, some monolithic entity you can't speak to that operates a faceless website with an army of engineers preparing it for cyberwar. I'm just a guy running a site on my own, and I respond to any question you have. Maybe there's some cool bot you want to run that I wouldn't mind. Seems like asking me would be the polite thing to do.

Hamumu Rule #1 Since Day 1: BE NICE TO EVERYBODY ALL THE TIME. That includes me.
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  B.H.E. 10:51 AM -- Wed October 12, 2011  

It's time for B.H.E.! That means a T.A.G. tournament! Like the other Halloween tournaments, this one runs for 7 days, and the prize is 50 Yerfbucks (25 for second place, 10 for third place). Make sure you play every day for the next week, or you'll have no chance to win!

Because of how T.A.G. works, this one was a little tricky to set up. Firstly, I'm hoping it's working right. Secondly, it works like this: Acronyms entered starting today (the 12th) count toward your B.H.E. score. You'll still have voting to do today, which is not for B.H.E., it's just from the previous day's acronyms. The acronym entered on the 17th will be the last one for the contest, because then on the 18th, you'll be voting on the one from the 17th, and on the 19th is when the results from that voting get added in. T.A.G. may be a simple game to play, but it's complicated to work with! Just remember to keep entering acronyms and voting, and you'll keep scoring!

Also, even though today is normal, the theme is much more appropriate starting tomorrow!
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  Batman Has Ended 05:31 PM -- Tue October 11, 2011  

To interrupt the constant stream of BHE announcements and contests, I thought I'd talk about the game I finished a few days ago. Batman: Arkham Asylum. Amazing! I haven't been this hooked on a game in years, it's like going back to Ratchet & Clank and Sly Cooper (it's actually a lot like Sly Cooper). It's just fantabulous and everybody should play. It's got everything you could want - there's a good story, great graphics, nifty voicework (you can overhear dozens of different conversations between the thugs that tell you what's going on as well as letting you know there are thugs around), and several different really cool games all executed perfectly. By that, I mean it feels like multiple games all combined.

The main game is Metroidvania - you roam around this island figuring out how to proceed further, looking for ventilation shafts you can sneak into, or high ledges you can grapple up to. Of course, in true Metroidvania fashion, you gradually accumulate new methods of getting around, so you can go back to earlier areas and explore further. And there are little hidden "riddles" to find, which you'll constantly be backtracking to reach with new powers. The Riddler has placed these all over, but calling them riddles is a biiiig stretch. They are collectible question marks, but there are also other things that are a bit more riddley, like having to take a picture of something based on what he says (for example "I hope you SEE what Tweedledee and Tweedledum SAW", so you look around until you find a see-saw, and take a picture of it), or trying to align two pieces of a question mark in your view, then take a picture. I love those ones.

Then, as you're exploring, you come across a group of thugs. This is the second game. You beat the crap out of them, in a practically-one-button fighting system that actually feels really satisfying and fun. There's also a second button, which you use to to counter enemy attacks (super easily, I like that), and a third button for a 'stun attack' that you almost never use, and you could complete the game without, once you learn how to leap over guys and hit them from behind. Anyway, this is your usual brawling, but implemented in an awesome way that makes you feel super powerful as well as giving you a ton of options at any given moment, and a lot of stuff to do. As you go, scarier sorts of thugs appear, with knives or stun guns, and so there are constantly new techniques you have to employ.

The third game is stealth action straight out of Metal Gear Solid, only better. This is what happens if the group of thugs you come across happens to have guns. The game changes completely, because they can kill you very quickly. So instead of running up and punching them, you hide in the rafters, drop down and scoop them up. This is by far the coolest part of the game. It's also the best stealth implementation I've played. You've got no radar because you don't need one. If you get seen, it's not fatal, you can lose your pursuers in maybe five seconds at the most (on the other hand, you can also die in five seconds, so don't get seen). There are probably over a dozen ways that you can take enemies out and it's amazing how much variety there is. I didn't even know about some of them until I played Challenge Mode after winning the game and taking guys out in these special ways was among the "Challenges" it offered me. You can catch them with a grappling hook and yank them off a ledge, you can sneak up on them and do a sleeper hold, you can plant explosives so that a wall explodes on them, you can glide kick from the sky and slam them down, you can zip down and scoop them up and leave them hanging from a gargoyle, you can detonate a sonic batarang to blow one up (you can only do that to one guy in each area, so choose wisely...). And it's all very organic, they're just walking around this room, and you look at all the tools at your disposal, time their movements, and take them down.

Oh yeah, the best part about stealth is how the guys freak out as they realize they're being wiped out. When it's down to the last guy left, he's so terrified he'll occasionally shoot at the walls, and constantly turn back and forth, looking in every direction. This is extra cool because it serves a gameplay purpose - the more the guys freak out, the harder they are to deal with, so even though there are fewer guys, it's still tricky.

But never too tricky! That's the best thing in the game. It's constantly fun and interesting, and never gets too hard! Man, I can't remember the last time I've beaten a final boss without being horribly frustrated. It also only sends you back a very short way when you die. And not just fun, and not just easy, but also always new! The game just goes on and on with new events and situations. There can't be more than about five minutes of gameplay between each 'major event' in this game (unless you spend twenty minutes hunting for riddles like I always did). And you'll be going along, thinking you have everything down, when suddenly The Joker throws something new at you, like snipers or giant super-thugs.

Downsides... Killer Croc's Lair is just stupid. Outright video game stupidity, in the classic "too long doing the same thing and one mistake will kill you" vein. On the flipside, it includes several interesting events, with a bunch of different change-ups to the action. And it's not nearly as long and dull as other games would have. Other downsides... hmmm... I'm trying... it's too awesome? It ends too soon? Hey, the sequel is coming out next week! Whoo! Oh wait, I do have another actual downside. Detective Mode (basically X-Ray Vision that highlights important objects for you) is far too useful, and there's no reason to ever turn it off except during brawls. Why is that so bad? Because in Detective Mode, the entire world is monochromatic and weird-looking. So you spend about 80% of the game not seeing what the game actually looks like. Every time I actually turned it off I was shocked at how cool everything looked.

There's so many other little things I could fanboy about with this, it's just amazing, but I've said too much already, judging by the giant wall of text. It's really just a big ball of perfection the likes I haven't seen in gaming since... Portal I guess? I'd much rather play this though.
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  Bring Healthy Eyes! 02:00 PM -- Tue October 11, 2011  

Remember this goofy little game? Well I think it's fun! And now I challenge you to take it on. Just like Booty Haul, Everybody, what we have here is a one-week high score contest on the Hamumu Word Search. And just like that one, the winner gets 50 Yerfbucks, second place gets 25, and third place gets 10. So start searching those words!

Other fun facts of note: your Profile tab on your Dumb Page contains all your exciting BHE statistics for the month. You can also spy on the competition by visiting their Dumb Page. Also, the BHE Page now has a handy calendar so you know when things are due or ending. Which means I should remind you: our first deadline is fast approaching! Booty Haul, Everybody ends on October 13th, in two days! So haul your booty over there and earn some points.
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