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Real Name Sho   
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Nickname Sho
Email Concealed by request - Send Mail
ICQ None given.
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Homepage http://
Signed On May 26, 2002, 23:49
Total Comments 575 (Apprentice)
User ID 13167
 
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News Comments > Shadowrun Returns DRM Ending
18. Re: Shadowrun Returns DRM Ending Nov 13, 2013, 08:57 Sho
 
nin wrote on Nov 13, 2013, 08:47:

Ich Bin Ein Auslander?


Pro-tip: Instead of dropping the diacritics on vowels (turning e.g. 'ä' into 'a'), you can always just write it out by appending an 'e'. "Auslaender" is equivalent to "Ausländer" in the public understanding.

Trivia: A lot of older German gamers/geeks including myself actually don't write umlauts (ä, ö, ü) in their German online correspondence because they grew up playing games or using systems supporting only ASCII, so they got used to writing them out this way. When I do official paperwork I actually have to remind myself to write them.

(I know it's the song title, but hey, why not go for a TIL opportunity when it presents itself?)

This comment was edited on Nov 13, 2013, 09:04.
 
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News Comments > Shadowrun Returns DRM Ending
16. Re: Shadowrun Returns DRM Ending Nov 13, 2013, 08:34 Sho
 
Fibrocyte wrote on Nov 13, 2013, 07:54:

Steam is so convenient and non-intrusive that I would hesitate to categorize it with typical DRM. Why must people whine so damn much about nothing?

It's not whining to point out that none of Steam's convenience and non-intrusiveness derive from its DRM features; it'd work just as well if it didn't have them, and it would allow users additional freedoms that I've sometimes desired in practice. I use Steam, I get value out of Steam, but I think it could be even better. Fortunately, it actually has been improving, too.

I think having DRM-free purchase options for games only increases the pressure on Steam to improve, so I think it's a good idea to ask for them for that reason alone. However, I've also sometimes explicitly bought a game from a different vendor than Steam because circumstances required me to have those additional freedoms Steam doesn't offer (for example, concurrent logins).

Having an opinion != whining.
 
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News Comments > Shadowrun Returns DRM Ending
12. Re: Shadowrun Returns DRM Ending Nov 13, 2013, 07:35 Sho
 
Blue wrote on Nov 13, 2013, 07:34:

Ich bin ein Berliner!

So am I! (For reals, and for 29 years.)

And yeah, this makes me very happy. I ended up really enjoying the game, but I was pretty pissed with them for not being more forthcoming about the constraints the licensing situation might put on them, since it was clearly relevant to investment decisions made by the backers. That this got resolved is an unexpected surprise and means I get to recommend the game with a clean conscience, and am much more likely to back future endeavours by Harebrained.
 
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News Comments > Out of the Blue
14. Re: Out of the Blue Nov 12, 2013, 19:24 Sho
 
Brilliant news: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1613260297/shadowrun-returns/posts/659187

I was among those who heavily criticized Harebrained for not being more forthcoming about what their licensing dependency meant for their options; that this got resolved, along with the ongoing work on an improved saving system, addresses all the bitter pills that came with this game.
 
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News Comments > Out of the Blue
13. Re: Out of the Blue Nov 11, 2013, 16:45 Sho
 
jdreyer wrote on Nov 11, 2013, 16:36:

$40 curious?

Well, sorta ... the $59 tier was new in the same update and added beta access, which was an enticing carrot to dangle, and since I assume Morgan wouldn't have joined up if he wasn't convinced of their creative talent, my confidence in the whole thing grew. Also, Raindrop failed to make funding today which I had $25 in, so there was new free money in my KS budget.
 
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News Comments > Out of the Blue
11. Re: Out of the Blue Nov 11, 2013, 16:07 Sho
 
BTW, Stasis just announced they're getting a soundtrack by Mark Morgan. Made me bump my pledge from $19 to $59. Super-curious to hear a scifi score by him.  
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News Comments > QUAKE LIVE Going Standalone; Linux and OS X Support Ending
17. Re: QUAKE LIVE Going Standalone; Linux and OS X Support Ending Nov 11, 2013, 02:44 Sho
 
> thats not true, you can play it right now on linux and later with emulation.

I'm aware, but see the "symbolic" in the same paragraph. Native matters there.

> how can a modern gamer not have a win partition.

I have one, but I haven't used it since May. Between native releases and wine there's enough games on Linux for me now.
 
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News Comments > QUAKE LIVE Going Standalone; Linux and OS X Support Ending
10. Re: QUAKE LIVE Going Standalone; Linux and OS X Support Ending Nov 9, 2013, 03:53 Sho
 
As a Linux gamer, this is some sad shit symbolically. I'm not playing Quake Live so admittedly it doesn't actually affect me, but id were the original guys to give a crap about the platform - this will be the first Quake game not to be on Linux. In parallel to Linux actually taking off now. Crazy shit. This really isn't old id anymore.  
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News Comments > Next Mass Effect Teases
3. Re: Next Mass Effect Teases Nov 7, 2013, 20:46 Sho
 
Cabezone wrote on Nov 7, 2013, 20:42:
The ending would have worked out much better if Leviathan was included in the base game and the AI didn't take the form of a blue child.

Didn't really mind the child, but the child *voice actor* sure wasn't very robust IMHO.

Anyhow, many words have been said on that ending. I'm pretty talked out about it ... let's see where they take it now.
 
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News Comments > Next Mass Effect Teases
1. Re: Next Mass Effect Teases Nov 7, 2013, 20:27 Sho
 
You know, despite everything, I'm still looking forward to this. Yes, the Mass Effect 3 ending was a missed opportunity in many ways, though to me, more in its implementation than its nature. There was still quite a lot of good in those games, though, and some great memories, and I wouldn't mind seeing more in the same vein. It's not the game I want to play every time I run a game, but it sure is some of the time.  
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News Comments > Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer
22. Re: Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer Nov 7, 2013, 20:08 Sho
 
NewMaxx wrote on Nov 7, 2013, 19:45:
Maybe it "looks like ass," but if it is reminiscent of the original style (with some HD touches) and is portable to other platforms, your argument for AAA visuals just doesn't hold water for the relatively small funding.

My argument/feeling is actually a little more complicated than that, though.

First of, we need to differentiate between aesthetics and graphics. Let's define graphics as the tech features used to render a game, and aesthetics as the creative choices made in how to render. They're separate things: A game can have primitive graphics but stellar aesthetics (you can make an aesthetically sound, appealing game with primitive technology), and a game can have stellar graphics but poor aesthetics (see various bland AAA titles, Killzone or whatever).

The two do go hand-in-hand to a degree in that what aesthetics are considered appealing is a function of cultural considerations, and culture is partly affected by fashions, i.e. it can be hard to be considered aesthetically appealing without conforming to certain renditional trends defined by technology. But you can also intentionally defy those trends for example as deliberate anachronism, etc.

Yet you also have to be careful not to equate aesthetics with taste -- individual taste can of course vary widely, but you can totally generalize / average out some objective statements about what makes good design, partially because many of them are rooted in physical parameters defining human perception, such as the workings of human color vision, the optics of our eyes, evolution-lent characteristics of how we perceive and process visual stimuli changing over time, and so on and so on.

Aaanyhow ... my disappointment is more about the aesthetics than the graphics. I think Wasteland 2 is putting badly fashioned aesthetics on display in much of the material released (strangely, especially in newer releases -- that "First Look" video was quite decent). The relative noise/detail level of the assets used in the composite images often doesn't match up well for example, some elements are simply rendered poorly, the color grading misses out on opportunities to create depth in scenes, things like that.

Now, I do think graphics factor into that in the sense that it's far, far harder to *implement* quality aesthetics when doing realtime 3D than when doing pre-rendered 2D. In a sense, the theoretically more sophisticated technology ends up working against you because of the requirements it makes of the specialized tech skills of your artists, the size (and ability) of your graphics programming staff, and your asset pipeline in general. In 2D, there's more direct artist control in that there's more freedom to do painting-like approaches (this is different from having a hand-painted style, I'm more referring to workflow) rather than having to do simulation.

So it's entirely possible inXile has good artists, but they just can't execute here. Time will tell. But I have this nagging worry that they *should* be doing better here somehow. And maybe they will, of course; they're not done yet.

Shadowrun Returns - not made by inXile btw. - is actually a good example, though - it has quite strong aesthetics (even at 1080p on 24"), done on a similar shoestring budget, with primitive graphics (if you're talking the program running on the gamer's box, I mean - the offline rendering tools that were used to create the assets aren't technologically primitive, of course, but then the same is true for realtime 3D assets), in 2D. Let's hope Torment will benefit from that choice too.

As for your mobile point, the small screen size would help hide some things, but not others.

Note though: I don't regret backing it, and I still look forward to getting my hands on it. I'm just critical, not angry or mocking or so.

This comment was edited on Nov 7, 2013, 20:37.
 
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News Comments > Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer
17. Re: Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer Nov 7, 2013, 17:58 Sho
 
Taskeen wrote on Nov 7, 2013, 17:54:
Yeah, I grew up playing on crappy computers. Plus I had never heard of it at the time. In 1999, I was playing the first Doom, trying to get Half-Life 1 to run on my shit computer for the 1,000th time, and mostly playing on my consoles with Mario Kart on Nintendo 1 and FF7 on Playstation.

Ah no, that's not what I meant :). I meant I don't get the whole "Watching Let's Play" videos thing. I do find them useful occassionally to look up a line of dialog I missed or so, but not watching them continuously for entertainment. Yet for a lot of (especially younger) gamers they've clearly become a normal/big part of gamer culture. I'm not shitting on it, it's fine - it's just alien to me.
 
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News Comments > Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer
15. Re: Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer Nov 7, 2013, 17:51 Sho
 
You watched a playthrough of PS:T on YouTube instead of playing it yourself?

Oh boy. I feel old.

But yeah, that's the game I mentioned in the earlier comment. Backed the hell out of it.
 
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News Comments > Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer
3. Re: Wasteland 2 Beta Near; Wasteland Re-release Nearer Nov 7, 2013, 10:56 Sho
 
I know it's shallow, and I'm still quite excited for the game overall, and I really like how the team has been handling the community, but ... I can't entirely get over the fact that the graphics, well, look a little like ass. And not a fine ass either. It actually looked better back when they dumped that first 20m gameplay video; screens and videos of newer areas some how look less polished.

I guess it's entirely possible they're going to do another polish pass over the graphics, and if so I don't want to punish them for being open through development, so I feel a bit bad for complaining. OTOH, if they don't do that polish pass, well ... it just won't be a very good-looking game. And I don't mean the bells and whistles of the engine, but aesthetics and craftsmanship. It might still be a great game anyway, of course (I care more about writing than graphics).

It gets trickier for me when I think about Torment, though. On that one, I'm *really really* invested emotionally, and I just love the stuff that team has been releasing about their gameplay design ideas (the Crisis design example, say) and their RPG system (the Tides stuff is so cool). I just want the looks of that game to live up to the design vision and be just as rich. I think Torment will benefit from technology sharing with Obsidian's Project Eternity in a way Wasteland 2 hasn't, as well as from doing pre-rendered backgrounds instead of realtime 3D in general (I think it's easier to pull off great graphics with that sort of pipeline on their budget level), but ... I'm concerned about the raw ability of their production art crew. I hope they push themselves.

This comment was edited on Nov 7, 2013, 11:03.
 
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News Comments > Broken Sword 5 Episodic; First Episode Next Month
1. Re: Broken Sword 5 Episodic; First Episode Next Month Nov 5, 2013, 17:20 Sho
 
One of their people explained on his blog that they're doing the episodic thing mostly so they can deliver something to backers before Christmas rather than delay the whole game into next year. Seems OK to me. All the backers get both episodes anyway, and a 1 1/2 month gap between episodes doesn't sound too bad given they're saying the overall game is as long or longer than Broken Sword 1 was (a fairly long game by today's standards). And I'm used to episodic from Telltale, King Art and other adventure studios these days, I guess ...

I suspect there might actually be a tech reason as well, though. I know from the same blog that they've been struggling with size limitations on the mobile releases (their source art is 4k res, so they could even do proper retina versions for the high-end tablets). Splitting it in two should help.
 
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News Comments > Linux Metro: Last Light Released
7. Re: Linux Metro: Last Light Released Nov 5, 2013, 09:28 Sho
 
Dagnamit wrote on Nov 5, 2013, 09:07:
valve has got be subsidizing these ports somehow, right? Not that it's a bad thing to do, I just don't see why a developer would do it.

Dunno, not that it's statistically significant or anything, but porting it is about to earn them from money from my pockets at least ...

I think the most likely explanation in this case is that these folks wrote their technology to be portable from the get-go (perhaps originally with other OpenGL platforms like OS X and iOS/Android in mind), so porting to Linux didn't take them long, and with Steam having solved the distribution and generally conduit-to-customer problem for them, why not. If you're in that kind of situation, it's conceivable that the programmer time might actually be financially justifiable.

That said, if you look at yesterday's round of Valve Steam Machines articles, Valve was indeed using Last Light to demo moving seamlessly from Windows to SteamOS. I still don't think they actually subsidized the port, but it means the Metro folks got some exposure out of porting it.
 
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News Comments > Valve: Steam Offline Mode "Designed to be Indefinite"
6. Re: Valve: Steam Offline Mode Nov 1, 2013, 20:20 Sho
 
I recently had a conversation with a Valve engineer about a bug I reported in Offline Mode and received a very reasonable response, too: https://github.com/ValveSoftware/steam-for-linux/issues/2836

It's worth a read, also for hints on how SteamOS/Big Picture impacts the platform and Offline Mode.

(I always have Steam in offline mode unless I need it to be online, which is to install or update games, or for a first run to have a game fetch the achievement schema. What and when I play is nobody's business.)
 
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News Comments > The Walking Dead Season 2 Announced
3. Re: The Walking Dead Season 2 Announced Oct 29, 2013, 20:26 Sho
 
nin wrote on Oct 29, 2013, 20:12:
Guess I should finally play season 1. It's in this impossibly huge stack of games, including the email I just got for the Hearthstone beta...


Do eeeeet. The gameplay is fairly basic, but it's got some truly fine writing (and I can even go without the "for a video game" qualifier on this one, I think), and in particular some of the most successful situational blends of dramatic pacing and interactivity I can think of (for those who played it, I'm e.g. thinking of the situation in the walk-in cooler in episode 1). Quality entertainment, all in all.
 
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News Comments > The Walking Dead Season 2 Announced
1. Re: The Walking Dead Season 2 Announced Oct 29, 2013, 20:04 Sho
 
"Adventures are dead."

Sho,
who has had much fun playing tons of great adventures in the last five years, not just by Telltale.
 
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut
59. Re: Ships Ahoy - Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut Oct 26, 2013, 14:09 Sho
 
Does it put you in god mode while the commentary runs?  
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575 Comments. 29 pages. Viewing page 8.
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