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Posts posted by Berzee

  1. When I play Far Cry 2, I don't think of the game (or its "core loop", if you wish) as being the 10-15 minute experience of accepting and completing a mission, but rather the 1-3 minute experience of discovering a band of hostiles and eliminating them using my custom loadout, the environment, and whatever props I can find -- explosive scenery, dry grass, vehicles.


    I like the gunplay and the AI, and I like how depending on your current inventory you might find yourself perfectly equipped for a situation or entirely out of your depth -- and so playing it as a game about adapting to "one moment in time" works for me. Sometimes I'd pop in and just play for ten or twenty minutes, do a couple of firefights, maybe find a diamond if I want to feel like I achieved some kind of permanence. =P


    Accepting a mission doesn't lengthen or alter the core loop for me -- but it does add some interest by posing the question, "Ok, you accepted a caravan destruction mission. Now how are you going to cross the desert and kill those snipers up ahead when pretty much all you've got is bombs?". If I do find myself well-equipped for the situation before me, I start looking for ways to complete things stylishly or elegantly. Of course, in the middle of some such smug attempt to "challenge myself" is a perfect time for malaria or gun jamming. =P


    I tend not to stick with one favorite gun, instead switching my loadout whenever I return to base. Sometimes I go for a themed loadout (all fire weapons, or all silenced, etc) and sometimes I pick a nice balanced combination so I can adapt to anything. The vehicles with guns make a nice supplement for some of my stupider weapon selections ;) and the other just-for-fun vehicles, exploration, scenery and wildlife make for nice distractions along the way.


    Also I avoid the boats and water as much as possible. =T

  2. Speaking of modeling the world at the moment of instantiation, I've many a time tried to imagine what a Garden of Eden game would be like. I never really came up with any concrete ideas but it probably involves diving down waterfalls and play-wrestling some tigers. (Probably also double-jumping was a real thing before the fall of man.)

  3. The format of that article is maddening; when you extract half of the things you say out into pull quotes they lose a bit of their impact. o_O

    I like the bit about working to become obsolete as well; soldiers should be hoping they'll be out of work soon, etc. And I can see how making a game that is anything more than Fun can be a daunting prospect -- even just trying to make a game that sometimes imparts a lasting tinge of optimism is a hard thing, let alone one that address An Issue.

    I can't tell what he's trying to say about the fact that people sometimes have different goals for change. Of course a game should be About something and that something should be agreed upon beforehand by the people developing it -- but in the wider discussion of how to make a game About something, does he want "dissenters" to be somehow Dealt With, or is he just saying that thing like the Allied Media Conference (where the attendees generally know beforehand that they are all roughly homogenous in their social goals) are more useful than conferences where the attendees might have disparate values?

  4. I haven't decided officially to quit it, but I would be surprised if I opened up the second King's Bounty game again. I got off to a shaky start and so I'll probably just delete it and jump into the third one (the final one that I own) -- I like the beginnings of those games better anyway. =P


    I also false-started Academagia for perhaps the fifth time. I'm never prepared for how much foreknowledge (obtained via wiki or forum) that game requires in order to be truly successful. I could just do what I'm sure the current experts did themselves and finish the year lots of times even if it's going badly, but I always feel like I'm missing so much content by failing skill checks that it makes me obsessively reload. I'm not sure if I will uninstall it again or try one more time and see if I've gained enough knowledge now to make things work.

  5. Good. I guess when it's not *real* time you're manipulating but just *computer* time, you don't have to worry so much. =P If I ever find myself inexplicably in possession of a computer-that-only-computes-books (or hankering to purchase a physical book) I will keep this wizard in mind.


    Not to hijack the thread and make it about other books, but this one reminded me (in passing) of the Rogue Wizard series by Christopher Stasheff, which are about a psychic-man (+ sidekick) who lands his sentient spaceship on planets of lesser technological sophistication, pretends to be a wizard, and tries to start revolutions and stuff. It's another good way of achieving "modern or future man stuck in a bygone era" without actually having to introduce a real time machine.

  6. I enjoyed the free chapters I read, though I never got around to buying it -- mainly because time travel almost always bothers me, so I thought I might not like it as much when he gets to that part =). As long as he mostly stays put once he gets there it might be fine though.


    Incidentally his web-o-comic Basic Instructions has been part of my check-daily routine for quite a while now.

  7. a humorous blog post about hipster and beards


    I was distracted from any potential humor, as I always am in such cases, by the author's throwing down the gauntlet of Transportation Maintenance And Repair as a definitive and unanswerable challenge in the first paragraph. =\

  8. I am extremely fond of Minties, which are mints with the consistency of a particularly chewy caramel. Apparently unknown outside of Australia and New Zealand.


    that sounds amazing

  9. The two staple candies that are always on hand in my house are Horehound Lozenges, and Moser Roth Dark Chocolate (I like the 85% cocoa bars best, and my wife likes the 70%).


    Andes Mints and Lemonheads are my two favorite candies but I don't buy these for myself because I consume them at an alarming rate, so these are usually reserved for when other people want to buy me candy-gifts.


    Candy Reminiscences:


    In my younger days I would always spring for Necco Wafers (so good, you'll say "Oh yeah Necco Wafers, why don't I have these more often? Oh well...") or Boyers Mallo Cups at the hardware store, and once a month I would go rollerskating and buy a Hershey's Cookies n' Mint Chocolate Bar but I could only get one of those after showing my mother that I was skating properly and pushing with both legs instead of just keeping once foot on the ground and limping along with single-legged propulsion, because she used snack money as an incentive to make me learn2skate.


    Speaking of Cookies n' Mint Chocolate Bars, those I think are discontinued but the Cookies n' Cream bars are still around and those are alright I guess. Speaking of Cookies n' Cream bars, those have nothing on the also sadly discontinued Nestle ALPINE WHITE bar.

  10. Currently learning why most buildings in games are Bigger on the Inside. I suppose it's because of the exaggerated movement capabilities (and expanded bubble of personal space) of FPS protagonists, but I made a one-room house that looks ordinary from the outside, and inside it feels like a closet! I don't want my buildings to be separate levels, so it looks like I'm going to have to experiment until I reach a reasonable balance. Anyone have any sweet tipz / linkz about this issue (not with fancy space-warping tricks I mean, just good interior design)? I might go play some DayZ or other games with seamless buildings that don't feel too constrained, to see if I can learn something.

  11. So I finished listening to The History of Rome podcast, which I picked up when trying to supplement Dan Carlin. I have to say, for all that I found Mike Duncan's presentation a little lackluster, I'm still impressed at the fluency and self-assurance his detailed survey of the Republic and Empire bequeathed to me. Even things I'd normally complain about, like devoting almost a dozen podcasts to the Barracks Emperors and the Crisis of the Third Century, ended up benefiting me just because no one's ever bothered to cover the events in any great depth.

    I can't recommend this podcast enough. Anyone who wants an encyclopedic take on the history of Rome and doesn't mind a somewhat homespun approach is strongly encouraged to check a few episodes out.


    Based on this recommendation from the ancient past I started listening to this The History of Rome Podcast as well and I like it! I like that he calls it a podcast even though it's just one guy (which is probably not technically inaccurate but for some reason I always think an internet talking-series with a single person is more of an Audio Web Log); I also like that he starts every episode by saying, "Hello", and that the tone of his voice doesn't change when he is making jokes. =P I find myself retaining more of the stories than I expected -- except for the names, of course. Thanks for making me aware of this audio web log.


    (Sometimes his frequent disclaiming of heroic stories as obviously fabricated reminds me of this poem, but not un-affectionately =).

  12. You can count me in the ranks of people who say "super cool" a lot after discovering your podcast, though I became aware of it after a few occurrences and made a deliberate choice to continue.


    I heard about Idle Thumbs after the Kickstarter relaunch and quickly listened to the whole backlog of episodes on my commutes, during which time the atmosphere of the show seeped into my bones and subtly changed me. When I finally caught up with those, I started with the first episode of 3MA and started listening to two hours of that every day, which as you may imagine effected a markedly different transformation. Basically I was Michael Keaton from Multiplicity until I exhausted my supply of old podcasts.

  13. When I was a tiny child I loved Flintstones Vitamins and somehow conspired to eat several handfuls when no one was looking, whereupon I was rushed to the ER and vomiting was induced.


    ^ thanks for sharing



    Actually, and I know you're joking, but it's Tom Senior at PC Gamer using "race" instead of "faction" in a question to David McDonough and Will Miller on page two of this interview. They both carefully reassert the use of "faction" in their response, probably to avoid the exact scenario about which you're joking.


    Maybe I am just bad at web-browsing, but I didn't find either of them using the word "faction" in the entire interview. Tom Senior uses it several times though.


    The culture boundary stuff from Civ IV seems great and I wish it was in other games; but I only played Civ IV for a few minutes because when I ran into the entirely-interchangeable religion system Nick mentioned, it was so silly to me that it spoiled everything else! I like the choice of different governments with noticeable impact on strategy, and I was hoping the religions would offer another level of customization. Plus it's weird to play a system that is essentially a serious implementation of the quotation, "A man's opinion on tramcars matters; his opinion on Botticelli matters; his opinion on all things does not matter." ^_o I'm sure they had a number of reasons and didn't make the decision thoughtlessly; but it's always there in the background, slightly bugging me. Knowing Civ IV though there is probably a mod somewhere* that makes religion the most important part of the game.


    * ok yes Fall From Heaven 2 I know =P

  14. Judging from the example on that page, maybe they expected people to primarily use the Random Int function to select a random element from a list / array, which are zero-indexed (and so for a list of 5 things, you'd want to to pick a number between 0 and 4).


    Seems like the inconsistency would create more problems than it solves, though. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  15. The real question I have is, does Malachi Rector eventually travel to a place that meets his exacting standards for interior decor? I took a bleak enjoyment from the fact that nearly every hotspot in the demo comes with a perfunctorily disparaging voice clip. (Also I agree with his rule of thumb about wicker).