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Game mechanics

Game mechanics are methods invoked by agents designed for interaction with the game state, thus providing gameplay. All games use mechanics. In general, the process and study of game design are efforts to come up with game mechanics that allow for people playing a game to have an engaging, but not fun, experience; the interaction of various game mechanics in a game determines the complexity and level of player interaction in the game, in conjunction with the game's environment and resources determine game balance. Some forms of game mechanics have been used in games for centuries, while others are new, having been invented within the past decade. Complexity in game mechanics should not be confused with depth or realism. Go is one of the simplest of all games, yet exhibits an extraordinary depth of play. Most computer or video games feature mechanics that are technically complex in simple designs. In general, commercial video games have gone from simple designs to complex ones as processing power has increased.

In contrast, casual games have featured a return to simple, puzzle-like designs, though some are getting more complex. In physical games, differences come down to style, are somewhat determined by intended market. Gameplay could be defined as the interaction of many elements of a game. However, there is some confusion as to the difference between game mechanics and gameplay. For some, gameplay is nothing more than a set of game mechanics. For others, gameplay—especially when referenced in the term of "basic gameplay"—refers to certain core game mechanics which determine the overall characteristics of the game itself. For example, the basic gameplay of a shooting or fighting video game is to hit. In a graphic adventure game, the basic gameplay is to solve puzzles related to the context; the basic gameplay of poker is to produce certain categorical combinations. Golf's basic gameplay is to reach a designated spot; the goal of these games is different from the gameplay itself. For example, while reaching the end of a stage, defeating the boss, advancing your characters' progress through the story or sinking the ball into a hole may be the purpose of playing a game, the fun is derived by the means and the process in which such a goal is achieved.

Basic gameplay defines what a game is, to the player, while game mechanics determine the parts of which the entire game consists of. In video games, gamers have a well-defined notion of; this is: What the player can do What other entities can do, in response to player's actionsWhat a player and other entities can do within a game would fall under the mechanics of a game. However, from a programming or overall design perspective, basic gameplay can be deconstructed further to reveal constituent game mechanics. For example, the basic gameplay of fighting game can be deconstructed to attack and defense, or punch, block and throw. For this reason, game mechanics is more of an engineering concept while gameplay is more of a design concept; some games are'abstract'—that is, the action is not intended to represent anything. Other games have a'theme'—some element of representation. Monopoly is a famous example where the events of the game are intended to represent another activity, in this case, the buying and selling of properties.

Games that are mechanically similar can vary in theme. Eurogames feature simple systems, stress the mechanics, with the theme being a context to place the mechanics in; some wargames, at the other extreme, are known for complex rules and for attempts at detailed simulation. Game mechanics fall into several more or less well-defined categories, which are sometimes used as a basis to classify games. A game turn is an important fundamental concept to all non-computer games, many video games as well. In general, a turn is a segment of the game set aside for certain actions to happen before moving on to the next turn, where the sequence of events can repeat. In a abstract game turns are nothing more than a means to regulate play. In less abstract games, turns denote the passage of time, but the amount of time is not clear, nor important. In simulation games, time is more concrete. Wargames specify the amount of time each turn represents, in sports games a turn is distinctly one'play', although the amount of time a play or turn takes can vary.

Some games use player turns where one player gets to perform his actions before another player can perform any on his turn. Some use game turns; some games have'game turns' that consist of a round of player turns with other actions added in. In games that are meant to be some sort of simulation, the on/off nature of player turns can cause problems and has led to a few extra variations on the theme

Glumche Island

Glumche Island is the rocky island off the northwest coast of Low Island in the South Shetland Islands extending 470 m in east-west direction and 290 m wide. The feature is named after the settlement of Glumche in Southeastern Bulgaria. Glumche Island is located 1.08 km north of Fernandez Point. British mapping in 2009. South Shetland Islands: Smith and Low Islands. Scale 1:150000 topographic map No. 13677. British Antarctic Survey, 2009. Antarctic Digital Database. Scale 1:250000 topographic map of Antarctica. Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research. Since 1993 upgraded and updated. Glumche Island. SCAR Composite Antarctic Gazetteer. Bulgarian Antarctic Gazetteer. Antarctic Place-names Commission. Glumche Island. Copernix satellite imageThis article includes information from the Antarctic Place-names Commission of Bulgaria, used with permission

Roop's Fort

Roop's Fort known as Roop's Trading Post, Fort Defiance, Roop House, is a historic building in Susanville, California. The building, built in 1854 by Isaac Roop, was the first building built by white settlers in Lassen County; the fort was a trading post for westbound migrants and was the first post west of Fort Hall in Idaho. The building served as the capitol of the short-lived Nataqua Territory, a territory created in 1856 to avoid California tax collectors; the territory was incorporated into Roop County, named for Isaac Roop, in 1861. California and Nevada entered into a border dispute known as the Sagebrush War over the Susanville area in 1863, Roop's Fort served as a fort for the Nevadans during the skirmish. California won the war, Roop's Fort became part of Lassen County in 1864, it is a California Historical Landmark, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. Photos from the NRHP nomination Historic American Buildings Survey No. CA-1310, "Fort Defiance, Susanville vicinity, Lassen County, CA"

Merchant Taylors' Girls' School

Merchant Taylors' Girls' School is a selective independent girls' school in Great Crosby, England. Merchant Taylors' Girls' School was established in 1888, having inherited the buildings from the boys' school that had moved less than a mile away in 1874; the governing body was dilatory in providing for the'new' school and it was due to the insistence of James Fenning, the Master of the Worshipful Company of Merchant Taylors, that the girls' school was started. At the School's opening all of the female staff were graduates; this was a feat. In June 1888, twelve pupils attended the school, by the 1920s it had grown to 300 and, in 2014, the figure has doubled; the continuing increase in pupil numbers enabled the purchase in 1911 of the adjoining house, "The Mulberries", which doubled the existing space. One of the buildings is the now Grade II-listed 1620s building. Two generous donations from a former headmistress ensured further development of facilities forming the basis of the network of buildings.

The early prefect system was replaced in 1972 with the more democratic system of Sixth Form committees still in place today. In 2008, the House System was reintroduced and the four houses were renamed Minerva, Thalia and Selene; the houses compete as they have since 1917 in points and sports. Latin was taught at the school from the beginning, as was mathematics, although if students chose to study higher mathematics they had to be chaperoned up to the boys' school. Early governors of the school insisted that the girls learnt traditional female pastimes alongside these more rigorous subjects, hence sewing and singing all played their part on the curriculum. Sport ranges from hockey, hill-rambling, cross-country running and rowing to self-defence; as of 2013, it has 511 pupils, ranging in age from 11 to 18. The current headmistress is Mrs Claire Tao; the school has an associated prep school, Stanfield Mixed Infants and Junior Girls' School, which takes both boys aged 4–7 and girls aged 4 to 11. After attending the mixed infants school, the boys go on to the Junior section of Merchant Taylors' Boys' School, less than a mile down the road.

The school is one of nine with links to the Worshipful Company of Merchant Taylors, including boys' school Merchant Taylors' School and Merchant Taylors' Boys' School, Crosby. The school's motto is that of the Worshipful Company: Concordia Parvae Res Crescunt; the school charges tuition fees of £ 11,169 per year. Fees were subsidised by the Government under the Assisted Places Scheme until the closure of that scheme in 2001; the Schools now run their own means tested Assisted Places Scheme under which about 20% of pupils benefit from free, or reduced-fee places. The schools offer around £1 million a year in bursaries. About 17 per cent of pupils at the two senior schools receive assistance, worth up to 100 per cent of the annual fees, it is a member of the Girls' Schools Association. Headmistress Mrs Louise Robinson was President of the Association in 2012. In 2013, Merchant Taylors’ was Crosby’s best performing school with 100% of pupils at the Girls’ school achieving five Cs or above in any subject at GCSE.

Links with the local community have always been important. In 1911 the school adopted a'waif' from the local children's home and formed a link which continued beyond the 1940s. A war effort was undertaken during WW2, making camouflage netting, scrubbing floors at local hospitals and raising money for'Warships Week'. Today's Sixth Formers continue this tradition by helping local schools, charity shops and nursing homes. Merchant Taylors is partnered through the British Council's Connecting Classrooms Programme with Nelson Mandela High School, Sierra Leone. Since 2010, the schools have participated in exchange visits; the partnership has enabled Nelson Mandela High to become a'Sustainable School'. Beryl Bainbridge, was expelled Kelly Cates, television presenter Dame Jean Davies, Director of the Women's Royal Naval Service Dame Janet Finch and Vice Chancellor of Keele University Jane Garvey, BBC radio presenter Clare Lilley, art curator Adele Roberts, Radio 1 and Radio 1 Xtra DJ Dr Julie Smith, politician Emma Watkinson, entrepreneur Eleanor Worthington Cox, actress Listed buildings in Great Crosby Official website Independent Schools' Inspectorate report, 2007

John David Kelly

John David Kelly was a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. Born in Grand Forks, North Dakota, Kelly earned an Artium Baccalaureus degree in 1956 from Saint John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota and a Juris Doctor in 1959 from the University of Michigan Law School. A lieutenant in the United States Air Force, Kelly worked as an attorney in the Office of General Counsel at The Pentagon from 1959 until 1962. Kelly returned to North Dakota in 1962. From 1962 until joining the federal bench in 1998, Kelly worked in private legal practice in Fargo, North Dakota, at the Vogel Law Firm, he served as president of the firm for his final 20 years with the firm. On January 27, 1998, President Bill Clinton nominated Kelly to a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit to replace Judge Frank J. Magill, who had taken senior status in April 1997; the United States Senate confirmed Kelly in a voice vote on July 31, 1998, received his commission on August 3, 1998 and commenced service on August 26, 1998.

Shortly after being sworn in, Kelly fell ill with an infection in mid-October 1998 and was taken to the Mayo Clinic. On October 21, 1998, Kelly died in Rochester, before his investiture had taken place, he was survived by his wife and three grown children. John David Kelly at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center


Sfakiá is a mountainous area in the southwestern part of the island of Crete, in the Chania regional unit. It is considered to be one of the few places in Greece that have never been occupied by foreign powers. With a 2011 census population of 1,889 inhabitants living on a land area of 467.589 km2, Sfakia is one of the largest and least densely populated municipalities on the island of Crete. The etymology of its name is disputed. According to the prevailing theory, it relates to its rugged terrain, deriving from the ancient Greek word σφαξ, meaning land chasm or gorge; the road from Chania to Sfakiá crosses the island from north to south, through the village of Vryses. From this village the route crosses the White Mountains to Hóra Sfakíon by the Libyan Sea. Halfway from Vrisses to Hóra Sfakíon is the fertile plateau of Askifou, surrounded by high mountain peaks. From here to Hóra Sfakíon the road is spectacular; the road hugs the western slope of the Imbros Gorge offering scenic views. Another scenic route is that leading from Kapsodasos to the plateau of Kallikratis, northeast of Hóra Sfakíon.

There are many beaches in Sfakiá. More adventurous visitors can follow the European hiking footpath E4 which crosses Crete through Sfakiá's mountains; the coastal villages can be reached by ferry boats. Not far east from Hóra Sfakíon is Frangokastello "Frankish castle"; the Venetian fortress here was built in 1371 to deter pirates and unsuccessfully, to control Sfakiá. It is ruined but is picturesquely set on a wide sandy beach with the towering White Mountains behind. Daskalogiannis was captured here in 1771. Accessible only by boat from Sfakiá is Loutro, a small seaside village with some archaeological ruins, a few houses, small hotels and tavernas. Loutro is car-free. In the north of Sfakiá is the fertile plain of Askyfou; the Sfakía region is crossed by many gorges, among, the famous Samaria Gorge. All these gorges run from north to all end in the sea. Many of them can be walked, several by inexperienced walkers; the region is inhabited by rare animals, like vultures and eagles, the kri-kri, the wild Cretan goat.

The coast of Sfakiá is on the Libyan Sea, inhabited by a diminishing fish population, but dolphins, whales may be seen. The idea of inaccessibility and ruggedness has played a key role in how Sfakia has been represented since at least the 18th century and it is reiterated in various ways today by tourists and locals; the local speciality, "Sfakian Pies", are thin pancakes filled with mizithra cheese and served drizzled with honey. Hóra Sfakíon is famous as one of the centers of the resistance against the occupying forces of both the Venetians and the Turks; the impenetrable White Mountains to the north combined with the rocky beaches on the south helped the locals fight off all invaders. Anopolis, a village near Hóra Sfakíon, is the birthplace of one of the most celebrated Cretan revolutionaries, Daskalogiannis. A famous legend and unexplained phenomenon describes a procession of visions seen in the nearby village Frangokastello as troops that died in the war of independence against the Turks.

Patrick Leigh Fermor wrote about their resistance to occupation. Many tales of revolts and uprisings in Crete start in the mountains of western Crete - mountain guerillas, pallikari fighters and rebel assemblies. After the Battle of Crete during World War II, the locals helped many New Zealand and Australian soldiers escape from here on the night of May 31, 1941, suffering great reprisals. King George II of Greece had escaped this way when the Germans invaded. Near the village of Komitades is the Church of Panagia Thymiani where the revolution of 1821 began. At the village of Loutro is the ruined "chancellery" where the first revolutionary government of 1821 met. Sfakiá is notorious for the harshness of the warlike people. Sfakians themselves are still considered somewhat beyond the reach of the lawmakers and tax collectors of Athens, with vendettas over stolen sheep and women's honour still fought late into the 20th century, with a whole village abandoned. Stealing and banditry had been considered a way of life in the mountains appearing in a Creation myth, which made God Himself a Sfakiot, as recounted by Adam Hopkins:...with an account of all the gifts God had given to other parts of Crete - olives to Ierapetra, Ayios Vasilios and Selinou.

But when God got to Sfakia only rocks were left. So the Sfakiots appeared. "And us Lord, how are we going to live on these rocks?" and the Almighty, looking at them with sympathy, replied in their own dialect: "Haven't you got a scrap of brains in your head? Don't you see that the lowlanders are cultivating all these riches for you?"The Sfakians are famous for their hospitality and generosity towards guests, resulting in a shift from traditional labour towards tourism, with now many families running their own small hotel or restaurant. Many northern European visitors to the area in the 1970s onward who still return today stress hospitality as key element that attracted them to Sfakia. Conversing with these visitors' impressions, locals are interested in the idea of hospitality as a form of cultural distinctiveness and morality and they debate what it means to speak of hospitality in the age of mass tourism; the archeology and history of Sfakia is the object of a field survey undertaken by the University of Oxford.

The province of Sfakia (G