Friday, September 28, 2007

A Brief Note on Facebook

And/or Social networking webs in general. If you look over to the right, you'll see a horrible picture of me. That's purposeful. First if I don't know you, I really probably don't want to talk to you on the street and this makes that less likely to happen. Second, I'm not what one might refer to as photogenic, so it is a bit of the "best of a bad lot" as they say.

I blog because I have a need to put stuff down. It's a live journal; that's how I approach my presence on the 'tubes. It is a bit of marketing, though I haven't made mention of Galactic Empire in a while, and eventually it will be a meeting place for fans of Castle Games.

I'm not going on face book. And I don't have a widget for you. I've "browsed" one of the social sites once (looking for a friend of a friend's record shop). As a search/info tool it was useless. Oh don't get me wrong, if I wanted to endlessly click through interlinked pages of pictures of people I have no connection with and read their muddy comments, I would be set.

It seems to me that blogging is about me. Me centric, let us say. That fuels me and I suppose at a core level I'm at least partially a narcissist. It seems to me that social pages are about who I "know". Except I don't know them, I've simple been allowed to "install" their widgets. I think it may be the most modern example of the office cocktail party. You know the one where every body walks around mentioning how they met Mr. Guy, who's on TV or Mr. Politics, who voted against that thing, or Ms. Hottie from accounting.

Maybe the duality is a deep - shallow comparison. Blogging is deep, requires my effort. Often an effort I'm not up to. Face book requires me to ask people for their pictures. And then I can procalim I know them. And then I'm, like, cool.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The one where I show I'm a HALO fanboi

There's a really keen article about Bungie (Bungle? It's an "EYE", idiot. Oh, BINGO.) on the Escapist. It makes a really interesting point, or rather highlights one made by one of the Bungie crew. Some of the folks there have been working on HALO stuff for 10 years. And apparently, they're ready to move on.

And I thought, 'Hey, I've been hacking away at GE for over 10 years'. I guess thats how you know it's done. When you don't feel a need to change it anymore.

(I think I used really really often in this post. Really.)

Anyways, by this time next week I should have a brand new 360, and Brian has already lent me his copy of HALO 2 (thanks!). I really enjoyed HALO, even if I did play it on PC which meant no co-op mode. The vehicle control still stands out as the most intuitive ever. Going to take some effort to get past the mouse thing, though.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Not quite flawless

As in DD, or Hank as some have preferred. I am experiencing some visual tearing/artifacting while playing SFC II. The game otherwise runs flawlessly, but there is a white flash line accross the tactical display pane. It's weird.

Battlefield 2 and Rune both ran admirably. I should have run the server, but was forced due to an oversight in LAN components to run the wireless, which had no effect on my game play (that I could see), but I guess would not have been good for server-ness.

I'm going to experiment with an old Dell box, borrowed from David, and see about bringing up my own dedicated servers. SFCII and 1942/Vietnam for sure I think. I might try BF2, but I'm not sure the box I have is up to it. On the other hand , you don't need a lot of juice to run a server, no graphics and all.

I may try to see about an arrangement for faster internet connectivity.

Thursday, September 20, 2007


I think I might be half way through Bioshock. Certainly, I've reached the point where the tools I have are making the game easier. I'm still downloading my Tabula Rasa client because my connection has been flaking out. I miss my old reliable cable provider.

'DD' shall officially be refered to as DD-532. Which is listed in the 'official' SFB lists as U.S.S. Lysander. But DD will do.

Big game weekend, both because of DD and David hits the road next week.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Why EA R0X0Rs (uhm, not)

I had a terrifying experience last night. Technically two terrifying experiences, but I'm not going to explain how after three hours of Bioshock I tried to go to sleep and woke up screaming. It happens.

No, no. I;m talking about not being able to remember the password for my primary Battlefield 2 nickname. 105 hours, slipping through my fingers. And EA's version of technical support is more like technical jello. The pudding kind, because not only does it not support, you can't see through it.

I'm thinking people must forget their passwords all the time. Especially if you're like me and leave the "Remember my Password" box checked. Did you know that there is no way to reset that? That's right, EA's thought full support response is to simply create a new id with a password you remember. 105 hours. I'm going to remember something alright.

After two hours of desk-head connecting, I figured it out. BF2 runs just top on DD. It's maxed. It's smooth. I'm starting to see how those guy's in the jets can shoot guys on the ground. With everything cranked you can actually see the guys on the ground...

Monday, September 17, 2007

Passing into the Fourth Age

And Larry goes on the road. Now fully replaced by the penultimate gaming rig "DD". Bioshock rocks. No doubt in my mind. Certainly best game I've played this year (new this year, that is). Possibly in my top ten. It's simply gorgeous to look at and the game play is very well done. Bioshock is very much a "System Shock" game. I will not be surprised to find that Andrew Ryan is a time traveling Shodan.

But, this does not come at no cost. The former Mk. VIII is now broken out into a pile of bits, soon to be sold piecemeal. It's like a post cold war Russian military base, everything must go.

I now need to spend some time updating all of my utilities. I notice that Nero fails to take advantage of my multi-core goodness, and therefore takes only slightly less time to encode a DVD. That's a bit disappointing. Vista is still out. From a gaming perspective, it's too much waste. I did not spend the better part of 2k on parts just to give 20% of my processing horse power back to the OS. I suspect that will change as drivers reach maturity, but until then HALO can wait.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Gnab Gib

I was there. At the end. They just turned it off. Well, from my perspective anyways.

As of 12:00 AM Saturday September 1, 2007 (CST, +/- a minute or two), Auto Assault was no more. I went out the way I came in, blazing away at PvE targets, looking for some or other quest text specific entity. And then they stopped reacting. And then it disconnected.

I suppose, truth be told, as MMOs go, it lacked. A lot of people have been pointing out how the game really didn't lend itself to group play. You can't drive a car and type chat with your mates at the same time. Or at least you really, really shouldn't if you want to survive. VOIP should have cleared all that up. Any body with an IP address can run a ventrilio or TeamSpeak server. You can rent a real server (if you worry about bandwidth and such) for lunch money if you need to. In the end though, not lending yourself to group play seems a bad characteristic to have as a massively multi-player game.

The upside is I have reclaimed almost 9 gb of hard drive.