Counter Strike 1.6 SKULL
Counter Strike 1.6 SKULL
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The Nintendo 3DS is a handheld video game console, revealed at Nintendo’s 2010 E3 press conference. Released in Japan in February 2011, it was released worldwide less than a month later. It uses autostereoscopic 3D to produce a 3D effect on-screen.
On January 27, 2011, the PlayStation Vita (code-named Next Generation Portable, or NGP, during development) was announced. It has a 5-inch OLED multi touch front screen and a rear touch pad, two analog sticks, 3G and WiFi connection, Sixaxis control and 3-axis electronic compass. It was released on December 17 in Japan and has been released on 15th (First edition bundle) and on February 22 in Europe (3G/ Wifi Vita, release bundle Vita, or the WiFi only Vita), and also in the Middle East, Australia and North America. Sony is looking to have up to forty launch titles for the western release and up to 100 within the release window.
The Wii U is a video game console from Nintendo. Billed as the successor to the Wii, it was mentioned in statement released by Nintendo on April 25, 2011, that the company was planning to reveal it during E3 2011 and that playable console units would be present as well. Code-named Project Café, it was officially introduced on June 7, 2011 with its final name, Wii U. The console released in North America on November 18, and in Europe, Australia and New Zealand on November 30, 2012, officially starting the “eighth generation” of video game consoles. Features of the new console include HD graphics support (on Wii U only), and a controller, the Wii U GamePad, which features a 6.2 inch touch screen built-in that can be used as a second screen providing added info and interactivity, such as “asymmetric gameplay”. The Wii U GamePad allows some games to be played without needing a TV set, through Off-TV Play. Most peripheral hardware from its predecessor, the Wii, such as the Wii Remote and Wii Nunchuk, Classic Controller and Wii Balance Board are confirmed to work with the new console, and the console is backward compatible with all Wii and Virtual Console titles. The Wii U discontinues backward-compatibility support for Nintendo GameCube discs and controllers, which also means that Wii games that support the GameCube’s controller will instead require use of an alternate control scheme such as the Classic Controller when playing them on the Wii U. The Wii U also has its own more conventional controller, the Wii U Pro Controller, which resembles an Xbox 360 controller in form and function and is compatible with most Wii U and Virtual Console titles, but not original Wii games. The console is available in two sets. The basic set includes the Wii U console with 8 GB of internal memory, the Wii U GamePad, an AC adapter, an HDMI cable, and the Wii Sensor Bar. The Deluxe set includes all of the items in the basic set but it has 32 GB of internal memory instead of only 8 GB, and is bundled with a GamePad charging cradle, stands for the GamePad and the console, and Nintendo Land. On November 30, 2012, the Wii U was released in Europe, Australia and New Zealand. A sensor bar is not included in the Basic set in Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
The PlayStation 4 (or PS4) is a video game console from Sony Computer Entertainment. Billed as the successor to the PlayStation 3, the PlayStation 4 was officially announced at a press conference on February 20, 2013. The fourth home console in Sony’s PlayStation series, it was launched on 15-November-2013 in North America and 29-November-2013 in Europe, and is set to launch Q1 2014 in Japan. Moving away from the Cell architecture, the PlayStation 4 is the first in the Sony series to feature compatibility with the x86 architecture, specifically x86-64, which is a widely used platform common in many modern PCs. The idea is to make video game development easier on the next-generation console, attracting a broader range of developers large and small. These changes highlight Sony’s effort to improve upon the lessons learned during the development, production and release of the PS3. Other notable hardware features of the PlayStation 4 include 8 GB of GDDR5 RAM memory and a faster Blu-ray drive.
The Xbox One is a video game console from Microsoft. Billed as the successor to the Xbox 360, the Xbox One was officially announced at a press conference on May 21, 2013. Microsoft had intended to implement strict controls over game resale and DRM controls, but later reversed its decision due to public backlash. It is the third home console in Microsoft’s Xbox series and  launched on November 22, 2013 in North America, United Kingdom, Spain, Mexico, Italy, Ireland, Germany, France, Canada, Brazil, Austria, New Zealand and Australia. The release was delayed until sometime in 2014 in 8 European countries (Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and Switzerland) due to various localization issues.
The history of games dates to the ancient human past. Games are an integral part of all cultures and are one of the oldest forms of human social interaction. Games are formalized expressions of play which allow people to go beyond immediate imagination and direct physical activity. Common features of games include uncertainty of outcome, agreed upon rules, competition, separate place and time, elements of fiction, elements of chance, prescribed goals and personal enjoyment.
Games capture the ideas and worldviews of their cultures and pass them on to the next generation. Games were important as cultural and social bonding events, as teaching tools and as markers of social status. As pastimes of royalty and the elite, some games became common features of court culture and were also given as gifts. Games such as Senet and the Mesoamerican ball game were often imbued with mythic and ritual religious significance. Games like Gyan chauper and The Mansion of Happiness were used to teach spiritual and ethical lessons while Shatranj and Wéiqí (Go) were seen as a way to develop strategic thinking and mental skill by the political and military elite.
In his 1938 book, Homo Ludens, Dutch cultural historian Johan Huizinga argued that games were a primary condition of the generation of human cultures. Huizinga saw the playing of games as something that “is older than culture, for culture, however inadequately defined, always presupposes human society, and animals have not waited for man to teach them their playing.”  Huizinga saw games as a starting point for complex human activities such as language, law, war, philosophy and art.
A series of 49 small carved painted stones found at the 5,000-year-old Başur Höyük burial mound in southeast Turkey could represent the earliest gaming pieces ever found. Similar pieces have been found in Syria and Iraq and seem to point to board games having originated in the Fertile Crescent. The earliest board games seem to have been a pastime for the elite and were sometimes given as diplomatic gifts.
The Royal Game of Ur, or Game of Twenty Squares was played with a set of pawns on a richly decorated board and dates from about 3000 BC. It was a race game which employed a set of knucklebone dice. This game was also known and played in Egypt. A Babylonian treatise on the game written on clay tablet shows that the game had astronomical significance and that it could also be used to tell one’s fortune. The Ur game was also popular with the lower classes, as attested by a 2,700-year-old graffiti version of the game, scratched onto a gateway to a palace in Khorsabad. Similar games have been found in Iran, Crete, Cyprus, Sri Lanka and Syria.
Among the earliest examples of a board game is senet, a game found in Predynastic and First Dynasty burial sites in Egypt (circa 3500 BCE and 3100 BCE, respectively) and in hieroglyphs dating to around 3100 BCE. The game was played by moving draughtsmen on a board of 30 squares arranged into three parallel rows of ten squares each. The players strategically moved their pieces based on the throw of sticks or bones. The goal was to reach the edge of the board first. Senet slowly evolved over time to reflect the religious beliefs of the Egyptians. The pieces represented human souls and their movement was based on the journey of the soul in the afterlife. Each square had a distinct religious significance, with the final square being associated with the union of the soul with the sun god Re-Horakhty. Senet may have also been used in a ritual religious context.
Excavations at Shahr-e Sukhteh (“The Burnt City”) in Iran have shown that a board race game existed there around 3000 BC which is the earliest ancestor of Backgammon. The artefacts include two dice and 60 checkers. Games such as Nard and the Roman game Ludus Duodecim Scriptorum (game of 12 points, also known as simply “dice”, lat. “alea”) developed from this Iranian game. The Byzantine game Tabula is a descendent of the game of twelve points.
In Ancient Greece and in the Roman Empire, popular games included ball games (Episkyros, Harpastum, Expulsim Ludere – a kind of handball), dice games (Tesserae), knucklebones, Bear games, Tic-tac-toe (Terni Lapilli), Nine Men’s Morris (mola) and various types of board games similar to checkers. Both Plato and Homer mention board games called ‘petteia’ (games played with pessoi’, i.e. ‘pieces’ or ‘men’). According to Plato, they are all Egyptian in origin. The name ‘petteia’ seems to be a generic term for board game and refers to various games. One such game was called ‘poleis’ (city states) and was a game of battle on a checkered board.
The Romans played a derivation of ‘petteia’ called ‘latrunculi’ or Ludus latrunculorum (the soldiers’ game or the bandits’ game). It is first mentioned by Varro (116–27 BC) and alluded to by Martial and Ovid. This game was extremely popular and was spread throughout Europe by the Romans. Boards have been found as far as Roman Britain. It was a war game for two players and included moving around counters representing soldiers, the object being to get one of the adversary’s pieces between two of one’s own
The oldest material found in the Solar System is dated to 4.5672±0.0006 billion years ago (Gya). By 4.54±0.04 Gya the primordial Earth had formed. The formation and evolution of the Solar System bodies occurred along with those of the Sun. In theory, a solar nebula partitions a volume out of a molecular cloud by gravitational collapse, which begins to spin and flatten into a circumstellar disk, and then the planets grow out of that disk along with the Sun. A nebula contains gas, ice grains, and dust (including primordial nuclides). According to nebular theory, planetesimals formed by accretion, with the primordial Earth taking 10–20 Ma to form.
A subject of on-going research is the formation of the Moon, some 4.53 billion years ago. A working hypothesis is that it formed by accretion from material loosed from Earth after a Mars-sized object, named Theia, impacted Earth. In this scenario, the mass of Theia was approximately 10% of that of Earth, it impacted Earth with a glancing blow, and some of its mass merged with Earth. Between approximately 4.1 and 3.8 Gya, numerous asteroid impacts during the Late Heavy Bombardment caused significant changes to the greater surface environment of the Moon, and by inference, to that of Earth.
Main article: Geological history of Earth
Earth’s atmosphere and oceans were formed by volcanic activity and outgassing that included water vapor. The origin of the world’s oceans was condensation augmented by water and ice delivered by asteroids, protoplanets, and comets. In this model, atmospheric “greenhouse gases” kept the oceans from freezing when the newly forming Sun had only 70% of its current luminosity. By 3.5 Gya, Earth’s magnetic field was established, which helped prevent the atmosphere from being stripped away by the solar wind.
A crust formed when the molten outer layer of Earth cooled to form a solid as the accumulated water vapor began to act in the atmosphere. The two models that explain land mass propose either a steady growth to the present-day forms or, more likely, a rapid growth early in Earth history followed by a long-term steady continental area. Continents formed by plate tectonics, a process ultimately driven by the continuous loss of heat from Earth’s interior. On time scales lasting hundreds of millions of years, the supercontinents have assembled and broken apart. Roughly 750 mya (million years ago), one of the earliest known supercontinents, Rodinia, began to break apart. The continents later recombined to form Pannotia, 600–540 mya, then finally Pangaea, which also broke apart 180 mya.
The present pattern of ice ages began about 40 mya and then intensified during the Pleistocene about 3 mya. High-latitude regions have since undergone repeated cycles of glaciation and thaw, repeating about every 40,000–100000 years. The last continental glaciation ended 10,000 years ago.
Chemical reactions led to the first self–replicating molecules about four billion years ago. A half billion years later, the last common ancestor of all life arose. The evolution of photosynthesis allowed the Sun’s energy to be harvested directly by life forms. The resultant molecular oxygen (O2) accumulated in the atmosphere and due to interaction with ultraviolet solar radiation, formed a protective ozone layer (O3) in the upper atmosphere. The incorporation of smaller cells within larger ones resulted in the development of complex cells called eukaryotes. True multicellular organisms formed as cells within colonies became increasingly specialized. Aided by the absorption of harmful ultraviolet radiation by the ozone layer, life colonized Earth’s surface. Among the earliest fossil evidence for life is microbial mat fossils found in 3.48 billion-year-old sandstone in Western Australia, biogenic graphite found in 3.7 billion-year-old metasedimentary rocks in Western Greenland, remains of biotic material found in 4.1 billion-year-old rocks in Western Australia.
During the Neoproterozoic, 750 to 580 mya ago, much of Earth might have been covered in ice. This hypothesis has been termed “Snowball Earth”, and it is of particular interest because it preceded the Cambrian explosion, when multicellular life forms significantly increased in complexity. Following the Cambrian explosion, 535 mya, there have been five major mass extinctions. The most recent such event was 66 mya, when an asteroid impact triggered the extinction of the non-avian dinosaurs and other large reptiles, but spared some small animals such as mammals, which then resembled shrews. Over the past 66 Ma, mammalian life has diversified, and several million years ago an African ape-like animal such as Orrorin tugenensis gained the ability to stand upright. This facilitated tool use and encouraged communication that provided the nutrition and stimulation needed for a larger brain, which allowed the evolution of humans. The development of agriculture, and then civilization, led to humans having an influence on Earth and the nature and quantity of other life forms that continues today