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About Regenherz

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  1. Books, books, books...

    Finished reading Ancillary Justice yesterday. This has probably been discussed already. Ann Leckie delivered a phenomenal debut - that has already been recognized by numerous prestigious awards, so I am piling on - that plays with gender and language without being overbearing? I have not yet read any criticisms online, so I don't know how it has been received by people who know more about these things than I do. Finally, there is a Science Fiction novel that is equally interested in portraying Artificial Intelligence and personality fragmentation together with imperial colonialism, political maneuvering and social hierarchies. Suffice it to say that this is a book about a colossal starship AI, whose ship is destroyed and who finds herself with only a single human body . . . but it might be enough to enact revenge. I think that's a pretty good premise and executed rather masterfully for a debut novel. Apparently, it's a trilogy, too, so yay?! Maybe?!
  2. Nobody expects the Dragon Age Inquisition

    To be completely honest, there is that one spot in a cavern in Crestwood that completely caught me off guard and scared me good. It was a mix of where my camera was at the moment and game sounds transitioning into combat orchestra. *shudders* ____ In spite of my skepticism before release, it turned out I quite enjoyed BioWare's more 'Skyrim-lite' approach to world design. The regions have a more interesting style than in most Bethesda games (perhaps excluding Morrowind) and I found it pretty easy to get attached to the landscape AND the characters this time. I won't succumb to calling it genuinely 'alive' but there are flickers of greatness in pretty much every area. I felt like it was easier to connect with the lore-laden landscape in a way that was meaningful, yet difficult to descibe. I am not sure, if I can convey how areas like the Hissing Wastes make me feel; it is a strange sort of serenity. It does feel like most areas have a rich history that goes beyond old castles. It feels like I am treading through the ruins of great dreams be it a dwarven Valley of the Kings, lands under constant assault by the blight, Emerald Graves (love that name) and trench warfare in the Exalted Plains, both with a history of colonialism and religious fanaticism. Strange châteaus echoing with stranger noises. More like any other Bioware game, I feel like this one, too, takes place between the lines that we rarely outright see. Loved most of my time with it, even if there are some negative things to say. Maybe another time.
  3. DICE 2013: Didn't they make Battlefield?

    I think there are a lot of valid points to be made on the Lollipop-Chainsaw-is-ethically-questionable side. Of course it is imaginative but its themes and the portrayal of its main character are still problematic. Then again, I have heard compelling things on the other side, too. That Warren Spector statement is just weird. "It shouldn't have been made." I think the attempt has sparked some interesting discussions about tongue-in-cheek sexism and why self-awareness doesn't necessarily make things better. Still, that's not what I think but it is interesting and "it shouldn't have been made" is just a stupid way of shying away from provocative topics and discussions. He is not furthering anything here. That is really depressing, the guys on the GiantBomb forums I mean. Somebody on reddit recently asked why we always have to validate games as a hobby, why can't we just have fun? I responded with this: "Because "I play games for fun" is not necessarily something we all have in common. Different people have different definitions of "fun". It is a filler word that does not describe much. I don't understand the opposite: why be bothered by the people who try to validate the hobby of gaming? Why is that a problem? It's like all these discussions we have about generally frowned upon and uncomfortable topics like feminism, sexism, racism, harassment or even just bad manners are an assault on some people's idea of fun. Do you really think what that minority wants will replace AAA titles any time soon? We want diversity. How in the world is that a bad thing? That does include talking to other gamers about having diverse opinions. This is not about preaching, the opposite actually: it is about trying to spread tolerance and empathy in a medium that has been traditionally preferred by people who were shunned by society. I am a little tired of people telling me to just have fun and be quiet. I like to be critical towards things I care a lot about. Maybe that's not your thing -that's fine- but I don't see how this always comes up as this threatening new wave way of thinking about games." On a lighter note, I watched that talk with Jenova Chen on Journey. It was fun hearing him talk about how they stripped down game mechanics, how game genres are organized after mechanics and not according to people's emotional responses to them like in other media. Interesting stuff.
  4. DOTA 2

    Had the same experience not too long ago and I have played many matches since. Made ample use of the report & mute functions. You will encounter the toxicity of that community but it is far and few between. Plus, sites like Dota Alt Tab or the Dota2 subreddit offer enough guides on how to play this game that you can rapidly learn the heroes - even if it is just by osmosis.
  5. Cyberpunk 2077

    Fair enough. You're right. I was not implying that she has to be a crazed sex bot in the context of this teaser. That's just one scenario that comes to mind in respect to how her body is clothed and framed in that situation, as well as how other trailers in recent memory portrayed women. It seems to perpetuate a similar notion of Sex & Violence in her past as character building features. That's why I said that it doesn't make it any less problematic, for reasons you just pointed out. But that's just speculation. I share your skepticism and I am curious to see how the game explains this situation - if it is picked up at all and not just seasoning for the setting.
  6. Cyberpunk 2077

    My question was this: is there a reason that highly-sexualized lady is there, other than to titillate and I think the trailer allows for a different interpretation: namely that the creators are using the sexualized nature of the cyborg to make some sort of statement about the world she is living in, something with which she obviously responds to with violence and desperation. I am not saying that this isn't problematic or the right interpretation, I am just not sure that this teaser deserves to be labeled with the same scrutiny as Hitman: Absolution, which really was the worst sexist crap imaginable (see Brandon Keogh's response). In other words, I think there is a difference in the intent of creators and the intent of the setting or world Cyberpunk 2077 will play out in. I am not expecting well-rounded characters in teasers. I am expecting glimmers of humanity and some sort of reason why she is hyper-sexualized. The trailer leaves some room for me to speculate on why she is framed in this way - I don't think it is that clear. I am aware that this plays with an assumed straight, male audience and I don't want to dismiss that.
  7. Assassin's Creed: Revelations

    Revelations surprised me. Only played it recently, before Assassin's Creed 3 came out, to play catch up and get some closure to Ezio's storyline. Really had no interest in Altair initially but I felt the story provided some great sense of closure for him, too. In general, the ending to this story was really well done and the final moments of this game gave me fantastic goosebumps - something I really did not expect beforehand.
  8. Cyberpunk 2077

    What are the right reasons for a female character to look a certain way, though? The other extreme is equally troubling. Characters are designed, you're right. I agree with the basic points: there needs to be more variety among the creators of video games to offer more variety on the other end. I wouldn't say that men cannot create compelling female characters but I would like more women to create female characters. They can bring interesting innovation and new viewpoints to an already stagnant industry plagued by some really nasty stereotypes. I don't want to position them as saviors: I am merely saying that this won't do any damage to video games, it will improve them. Video games are experiences and they are fed by the experiences of their creators. A broader type of experience might allow more complexity and diversity to flow into their games. There is a great article by Claire Hosking on the re-design of Cortana that might relate to this topic. On the teaser . . . I am conflicted. In the words of John Scalzi, I live life on easy mode. That female android coupled with the shot of that store makes her out to be some sort of pleasure/sex bot that is rampaging after gaining some sort of consciousness. That is what I got from it but then again, I understand the, legitimate, concern about her depiction. I think
  9. New people: Read this, say hi.

    Heard a lot about this Podcast and I am currently playing some catch-up listening to older episodes. Really like what I am hearing. Curiosity led me here. Not Molyneux. Actual curiosity.
  10. Cyberpunk 2077

    Full disclosure: speaking from a position of privilege here, so feel free to ignore: I thought the camera focusing on that one store with the 'sexy' lady poster slapped on the front, seemed to me like the Teaser was telling me that this murderous android was some sort of tool for depraved pleasure that -after gaining some sort of consciousness- went on a rampage. I thought there was some tragic theme behind the mere flesh & tits of it all. That doesn't excuse anything but it seemed like it had that level of depth at least.
  11. Cyberpunk video games

    Technically, they called that style Cyber Renaissance. That might be splitting hairs but there is a slight difference in style: it seems much more baroque and 'heavy' than other cyber punk games. There is a different sense of fashion and weight to their clothing. Of course, that might just be some weird subcategory within a larger Cyberpunk aesthetic. I don't think it benefits anyone to pick that aesthetic for the sake of aesthetic if certain themes are not in there. But it is postmodern, so they can use all these different inspirations and elements. That makes it hard to categorize anything - not that we should. I think Gemini Rue, the Syndicate Remake and Human Revolution have been good, recent titles. Of course this won't be explored as much as conventional Sci-Fi and Fantasy. Does that suck? Yes! Then again, I want them to do right by the genre and not just regurgitate Neuromancer if the execution is not interesting.
  12. Kentucky Route Zero - A Game in Five Acts

    The idea of it being stylistic rather than deterministic is a good one! As opposed to feeling the stress and being Lee in The Walking Dead, I feel like the narrator of Kentucky Route Zero, not necessarily a diegetic agent in the form of some character - which in itself is a nice illusion. Sure, I am controlling Conway but the two different viewpoints suggest a slightly larger scope: like this is more about the mythology of Route Zero (which, whenever mentioned in text, was actually subtly animated - that was a nice touch!). I can't help but think there is a certain detachment from the characters. Maybe that's just because we haven't spent that much time with them yet. I am really interested if there are more characters and if the current one remains persistent throughout the different episodes.