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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Bring your computers and play ‘til you drop: It’s frag fest night. Hey, if you’re going to do it, do it right, with LAN Party.
William Steinmetz covers all the technical stuff, just as you’d expect. Reconfiguring pretty much any version of Windows for your LAN party. And Mac OS, both classic and X. And PlayStation 2 and Xbox. Setting up your dedicated game server. Troubleshooting tech problems -- for instance, using ping to isolate network breaks.
But the emphasis is on Party, not LAN. To make yours as much fun as possible, you’ll have to do some planning, and make some decisions. Steinmetz helps with all of those. Hard-core or casual? Who’s invited? (Open -- anyone’s invited? Closed -- just a few friends? Capped -- anyone can come, but you can only accommodate, say, eight players?) Headphones OK? Do you have enough tables? Should you rent a cybercafe instead?
You’ll find complete party timelines -- from months before to the night of your shindig. Realistic physical layouts for small, medium, and mega-parties. Ideas for invitational fliers and welcome CDs. Time-tested moneysavers. Setup guidance (cables, furniture, and your all-important reliable power supply). Suggestions on finding staff -- and maybe even sponsors!
Don’t get too fancy the first time. But once you pull off your first LAN party successfully, Steinmetz offers some great ideas for ramping up. Adding console games. Modding and map design contests. LAN party triathlons. He covers every base -- or should we say, every level. Bill Camarda
Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2003 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.