$mash@bradmash.com: Technology Enthusiast & Full Stack Web Developer

Primordia Review: Why you should play it.

Primordia banner image, official logo.

Looking for a new video game to get sucked into? If you’re a fan of story driven games, sci-fi, interesting artwork, and atmospheric music look no further! Although relatively speaking Primordia is an older title by today’s standards (released originally in 2012), I believe it didn’t get the attention it deserved. I don’t blame the gaming communities at large though, it’s definitely a niche genre of video games – point and click.

However this may be perceived, it doesn’t really feel like a point and click. Well, maybe it does, but I guess the point is the game is so engaging and interesting that you don’t mind that you are mindless pointing and clicking all over the place to progress.

Horatio (left), Crispin (Right)
Horatio (left), Crispin (Right)

The Primordia World

Set in a post-apocalyptic world, you play as Horatio Nullbuilt a robot who has crashed his ship on a desert planet inhabited by other robots. Horatio is not lonely on his adventure to fix his ship, he is accompanied by his pesky companion Crispin Horatiobuilt.

As the two explore the world, it becomes obvious fairly early in the game that Horatio is fascinated with “Man”. Horatio has a copy of the Book of Man, which to Horatio is everything including divine in a sense. The beginning passage reads:

In the beginning, all was still and silent. Then, Man the All-Builder spoke Word, and the Word begat the Code, and so the world began to spin. Thus dawned the Primordium, the first age, the age of building.

The Book of Man
The Book of Man

Primordia Game Mechanics

The main mechanics of the game are world exploration, crafting, and puzzle solving. The items you find in the game each have pre-determined usage, but figuring out how to use your items, how to craft what you need for any given job makes you feel like a genius. As a programmer by profession, the puzzles make me smile as they are realistic and grounded in real-world mechanics, ideas, and logic. Many of the puzzles do not have simple solutions either. And map reuse is a key part of the game. Obtain one item at X, travel back to W, before going to Y. I honestly wrote some things down to better manage what I had going on in the game (mainly numbers for key codes and such).

Metropol

Final Remarks

The world is believable and enthralling as you embark to uncover the darker places in search of the energy power source you need to leave this crazy place. Eventually your journey will lead you to the city of Metropol where Horatio and Crispin fight for their very lives.

Compared to other games in the same vain such as Beneath a Steel Sky and Machinarium, Primordia offers an amazing and rememberable experience which is why you should play Primordia.

Why Node Will Win Over Java

Node JS and Java

I’ll preface this article with saying that I have nothing personally against Java. And honestly, I don’t think it’s a bad language to build apps in.

Now that is out of the way, I’ll explain why Node will end up winning over Java, at least for corporate web application development. To clarify and stress, Java generally has good performance if your programmers know what they’re doing, is easy to learn, and can scale as needed with proper implementations.

However, Node.js generally has these things going for it as well. And although different stress tests could avail different statistics of each platform, the great thing about Node.js in terms of building web applications is the asynchronous architecture of its run-time environment.

Although Node.js has threads for I/O operations, the runtime environment is architected as an event loop rather than some complicated system of managing threads. It does manage threads, but it’s as simple as having the event loop running – that’s it. As applications become more intensive on I/O operations, companies will need better performance in this area, and this is where Node.js shines. Why? To reiterate, if your web application is just responding to requests and performing general I/O then all of these requests can be handled asynchronously by Node.js by it’s very nature. You don’t have to do anything extra. You don’t have to include libraries to make this magic happen for you. The system itself is built to highly optimize these types of operations.

How long this evolution will take is hard to say. I’m a realist, so I’m not saying this is an overnight event, or a ten year transition. This could take thirty years, and probably will take closer to one hundred years. I think Java is the next COBOL, by and large companies aren’t selecting COBOL as their language/platform of choice when a web application is in mind. But, COBOL has been around because it is performant and was highly used for a number of years. The same will be true of Java.

So to try and make my prophecy more specific I will leave on this note. The argument could be made about any language given enough time. However, it seems to me that if trends continue the way I believe they will, Node.js will grow as a platform and community at a rate consistent and parallel to the rate of growth Java is abandoned at least for a substantial period of time.