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User information for S Westberg

Real Name S Westberg   
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Nickname Flatline
Email Concealed by request
ICQ None given.
Homepage http://
Signed On Feb 15, 2007, 19:09
Total Comments 2395 (Senior)
User ID 34131
User comment history
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News Comments > Op Ed
30. Re: Op Ed Sep 1, 2014, 23:47 Flatline
jacobvandy wrote on Sep 1, 2014, 23:35:
Chris Roberts did not finish Freelancer... From Wikipedia:

In 1997, Chris Roberts began work on a vision he had since he first conceived Wing Commander. He wanted to realize a virtual galaxy, whose systems execute their own programs regardless of the players' presence; cities would be bustling with transports and each world's weather changes on its own time. Commodity prices in each star system would fluctuate, according to the activities of the computer controlled traders, who import and export goods. Roberts envisioned thousands of players simultaneously interacting with and influencing this world through a unique and intuitive user interface never seen before in other games. Each player could pursue a quest set up for their character, and join other players to attempt other missions together without needing to exit the game and start a new mode of play. Artificial intelligence would fly the players' spacecraft, letting them concentrate on combat or other tasks. Roberts intended the cutscenes and gameplay visuals to be of equal quality so players would be unable to distinguish between the two.[35][36]

Sound familiar?

Two years later, the project was officially announced as Freelancer at GameStock, an annual showcase to the mass media of Microsoft's games.[37] The media covered the event, focusing on the features promised for this game. There were concerns about the state of the graphics and uncertainties over the promise of a dynamic economy, but gaming site GameSpot gave Roberts and his company, Digital Anvil, the benefit of their doubts.[38] Initially in 1999, Roberts announced the game would be available on the market by fall 2000.[35] However, the project suffered delays and by Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2000, Roberts said the earliest release for the game was at the end of 2001.[6]

In June 2000, Microsoft started talks to buy Digital Anvil. Roberts admitted that his team required large sums of money, which only a huge company could provide, to continue developing Freelancer with its "wildly ambitious" features and unpredictable schedule; the project had overshot its original development projection of three years by 18 months. Roberts trusted that Microsoft would not compromise his vision for Freelancer, and was convinced the software giant would not attempt the takeover if it did not believe Freelancer could sell at least 500,000 copies when released.[39] Roberts left the company on completion of the deal, but assumed a creative consultant role on Freelancer until its release.[40] Microsoft instructed Digital Anvil to scale down the ambitions of the project and focus on finishing the game based on what was possible and the team's strengths.[14][20]

Star Citizen is what Freelancer was meant to (but failed to) be. It was still a good game, but it was only saved from development hell and actually released in decent shape when Microsoft reigned it in. Who the fuck says "oh man, we need millions of dollars if we're gonna realize this vision," and then bails on the project when that deal is made? Either Chris Roberts cut his losses and cashed out while the gettin' was good, or even a juggernaut publisher wasn't insane enough to throw as much money at the project as he thought it deserved (yet he still made the deal and left). That is precisely the source of my own personal doubts about Star Citizen. This guy is not worthy of being entrusted with tens of millions of dollars, IMO.

Yeah pretty much. SC and Squadron 42 was supposed to be the ramp-up to his dream project, to prove the tech was there and he could do it. As soon as he tapped into the zeitgeist of people dropping hundreds and thousands on the game *concept* (right around when he said he completely abandoned private funding), I think he threw his original idea out the window and just decided to make his baby.

Problem is I backed the project for Squadron 42, which if memory serves according to the kickstarter was the main thrust of the project. I have this gut feeling that S42 is going to be nerfed to hell and back, because I can't see 50 million ever being enough to develop a game the size and scope of SC, and every penny squeezed from other areas is another penny you don't have to raise later.

At this point I can't see how SC is going to be able to be run from a "private server" for free. Maybe an AWS cluster, but who has hundreds or thousands of dollars a month to afford that shit?
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News Comments > Star Citizen Arena Commander Trial for DragonCon Attendees
8. Re: Star Citizen Arena Commander Trial for DragonCon Attendees Sep 1, 2014, 16:52 Flatline
Aero wrote on Sep 1, 2014, 15:53:
I figured it was worth the $45 to see what the deal was, and I believe however messed up the Star Citizen part turns out, that Squadron 42 will be worth it.

Have we seen *anything* substantial in Squadron 42?
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News Comments > Op Ed
14. Re: Op Ed Sep 1, 2014, 16:51 Flatline
Aero wrote on Sep 1, 2014, 16:29:
There is something not quite right about them having well exceeded their funding goal, but are still accepting large sums of money from people. I won't fault someone who, way back when, said to themselves "I want this game to be made, and so I'm willing to give them $300 to do my part to help make sure that happens." We're way, way past that now.

The problem that I have is that I put my money into kickstarter and almost immediately after that for the next year and a half their advertising basically made it look like my pledge level was the chump end of the pool.
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News Comments > Op Ed
13. Re: Op Ed Sep 1, 2014, 16:48 Flatline
Zor wrote on Sep 1, 2014, 13:21:
wow, this was just completely ignorant filth.. and to think he starts his "article" by claiming not to be a troll..

why the hell is anyone of the idea that they know how long this game will or even SHOULD take to create? why are you comparing it to Elite? Elite may have been made on 1/10th the budget but it's also only 1/10th OF THE GAME star citizen is shaping up to become.

"the harsh reality" is that the internet can and will continue to make shit up so they can stand on a stool for 15 seconds and sound sensational and hope to look important and informed.

Unfortunately 9/10ths of the game SC is shaping up to be is something I didn't want when I originally backed it, and in some cases (such as the flight model) were intentionally misleading or downright wrong.

Hey but maybe I'll be wrong and Space Janitor Simulator will be fucking awesome.
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News Comments > Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell Announced
18. Re: Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell Announced Aug 31, 2014, 17:11 Flatline
ViRGE wrote on Aug 30, 2014, 01:00:
Well I figured that it would be an open world action game, however after Volition's past comments I'm shocked it's Saints Row. I have to wonder whether this is something Volition wanted to do, or if it's something Deep Silver basically made them do.
Elf Shot The Food wrote on Aug 29, 2014, 23:29:
I didn't like Kinzie. Her constant sarcasm got old really fast.
Your opinion has been noted. And disregarded.

"Hey Kenzie, you wanna fuck?"

"What do you want?"

"I'm looking for rough sex and Kenzie scares the shit out of me."

"... okay fine."
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News Comments > Amazon Buys Twitch
40. Re: Amazon Buys Twitch Aug 29, 2014, 23:08 Flatline
jdreyer wrote on Aug 25, 2014, 19:11:
Cutter wrote on Aug 25, 2014, 17:35:
Why would they pay a billion dollars for something no one has ever heard of? More importantly they could have done it themselves for a few million.

I've heard of it of course, but rarely used it. I watched a guy draw a webcomic on it last year. Maybe it's all the rage with the kids these days?

If "the coming thing" is for people to *watch* other people play video games because they suck even at that, our culture is fucking doomed.
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News Comments > Volition Reveal Friday
34. Re: Volition Reveal Friday Aug 27, 2014, 17:14 Flatline
Cutter wrote on Aug 27, 2014, 17:11:
Do you even need Freespace anymore with ED on the way?

Absolutely. FS focused on a WW2-esque style of combat with giant carriers with killer weapons and flak coverage and little ships buzzing around them. The scale was significantly different and the gameplay style for ED looks drastically different.
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News Comments > Volition Reveal Friday
32. Re: Volition Reveal Friday Aug 27, 2014, 17:12 Flatline
Creston wrote on Aug 27, 2014, 16:31:
Bundy wrote on Aug 27, 2014, 14:56:
Imagine if dude gets on stage, picks up the mic and says "Freespace", then just drops the mic and leaves. That would be the most awesome thing, in the history of awesome. And I'm not sure the universe is prepared for the nerdgasm that would follow.

If by nerdgasm you mean mostly quiet people, then sure.

I know it's hard to believe, but Freespace 2 is a month shy of being 15 years old. A significant chunk of gamers, especially the kind that attends things like PAX, will have never played it, and will have no idea even what it is.

What's crazy is that the engine is still good with moderate work after all these years. Check out BSG: Diaspora for a jaw-droppingly good sim of Battlestar Galactica.

The open source community has made FS2 still graphically relevant and the gameplay is probably the best I've ever experienced.
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News Comments > Volition Reveal Friday
30. Re: Volition Reveal Friday Aug 27, 2014, 17:09 Flatline
RavingArmy wrote on Aug 27, 2014, 13:59:
I would be thrilled unto death if it was a new Freespace. I understand some would say, "Oh they're just jumping on the space sim bandwagon because of Star Citizen!" And if they are, so what? I've missed that sense of epic space opera combat that Freespace delivered. And I want that storyline finished once and for all, dammit! Either the Shivans go down or the TVA does, and I want to know which.

Freespace 3 would completely suck the oxygen out of the room that Star Citizen is dwelling in. I'd completely not care about SC any more.
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News Comments > The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt Trailers
21. Re: The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt Trailers Aug 14, 2014, 15:36 Flatline
Not only does this game look *fantastic*, but they're using the same engine for Cyberpunk.

Can you f*cking imagine what that's going to look like?
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News Comments > The Evil Within Season Pass Details
2. Re: The Evil Within Season Pass Details Aug 13, 2014, 16:25 Flatline
I generally follow gaming news but I have no f*cking clue what game this is.

Marketing failure.
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News Comments > John Romero's New Shooter Plans
65. Re: John Romero's New Shooter Plans Aug 12, 2014, 22:57 Flatline
LanikTnt wrote on Aug 12, 2014, 06:24:
The ad is the main reason why people think he's egotistical. Of course that was a long time ago and he's apologized since. I say it's time to give him a break.

John Romero's about to make you his bitch.

And the Ferrari, and the playboy spread his girlfriend did as basically an ad for Ion Storm, and the idea that graphic designers can drive video game projects, and so on and so forth...

I could continue. The bitch thing is hardly the most egotistical thing he's done. The only reason why it's memorable was because it was *so* opposite of reality.
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News Comments > John Romero's New Shooter Plans
64. Re: John Romero's New Shooter Plans Aug 12, 2014, 22:54 Flatline
wtf_man wrote on Aug 12, 2014, 09:38:
Flatline wrote on Aug 12, 2014, 00:40:
His ego helped kill off Looking Glass Studios.

Huh? WTF did he ever have to do with Looking Glass?
Other than Recruit Warren Spector for Deus Ex after Looking Glass already imploded?

Eidos had the opportunity to bail out Ion Storm hemorrhaging money on Daikatana or support Looking Glass.

Romero's ego and industry personality was a big reason why Eidos backed Ion Storm.

I won't say he was the sole reason why LGS went under (There were a lot of steps, and LGS isn't innocent by any means), but LGS was coming off of System Shock 2 and helping with the Thief games, and Ion Storm was putting up playboy spreads of Romero's girlfriend on the conference table.

If memory serves the only good game Ion Storm put out was Deus Ex, and that was because Warren Spector siloed off from the rest of Ion Storm and put out a good game.
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News Comments > Rise of the Tomb Raider Xbox Exclusive; Skipping PCs
32. Re: Rise of the Tomb Raider Xbox Exclusive; Skipping PCs Aug 12, 2014, 15:24 Flatline
The XBone must be hurting if they're pushing for that kind of exclusive.

I know it won't happen, but wouldn't it be delicious if Sony announced next week that the next Uncharted was going to be released on PC?
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News Comments > John Romero's New Shooter Plans
38. Re: John Romero's New Shooter Plans Aug 12, 2014, 00:40 Flatline
Fletch wrote on Aug 11, 2014, 20:03:
Creston wrote on Aug 11, 2014, 18:46:
Stop giving the guy so much credit for shit he did 20 years ago, people.

I'm still playing the games he made 20 years ago, and they are still a blast. Daikatana was lame, but he's still a game God as far as I'm concerned. Any time his name is even mentioned, you Debbi Doomers (swidt?) come out of the woodwork with the "bitch" and Daikatana comments, or "done nothing since id" bullshit, as if you've forgotten he's made some of the best fucking games of all time. He hasn't made a PC shooter since Daikatana. And with the new Doom looking shittier and shittier the more I learn about it, I can't wait to see what he does (as long as it's a PC game).

Damn, I'm kind of in the mood for yet another playthrough of Quake Dark Places now...

His ego helped kill off Looking Glass Studios.

Fuck him. Fuck him in the urethra with a rat tail file.

Let's face it, iD was kind of lightning in a bottle with the right talent at the right time without the egos getting in the way. Individually they may have some talent, but it's only when they got together under the right circumstances that they contributed anything significant.
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News Comments > Capture Added to Star Citizen Arena Commander
10. Re: Capture Added to Star Citizen Arena Commander Aug 10, 2014, 16:12 Flatline
CJ_Parker wrote on Aug 10, 2014, 15:41:
What DangerDog said. They should really focus on a few very elemental issues like:

- Make keys rebindable goddammit
- Add multi GPU support - People with Crossfire or SLI are still SOL unless they disable one GPU
- Add TrackIR support
- Increase the default FoV of the hangar from the sickness inducing "55" to at least "75" or higher. I don't even want to know how many backers this project has pissed off so far because people were vomiting after two minutes in the hangar.
- Add at least some more basic graphics fidelity customization options. At the moment (without manually editing ini/cfg files) you can only change resolutions and set the game to 'Very High' or 'High' etc.
- Work on the shitty graphics quality of the hangar. The ship models look mostly fine but everything else in the hangar sucks. The lighting is way off, textures flicker due to a lack of AA and AF and so on and so on.

You know, polish what you have and don't dump new shit on the pile of old broken shit. Not a good recipe. One very famous game that failed because of this (among many other factors, of course) was Star Wars Galaxies where they kept dumping new content on top of a broken base game. Not good. Share this fate, you must not.

Count me as someone who got motion sickness in the hanger. And I was able to play Mirror's Edge without getting sick. I traditionally have a cast-iron stomach. There's something about the FOV and all the little rubber-banding physics views that just makes it too much for me.

Oh yeah I forgot. It's an alpha. It could shoot my dog and sleep with my girlfriend and hey, I wouldn't have any right to complain because it's only an alpha.
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News Comments > SSI Vets form TSI
29. Re: SSI Vets form TSI Aug 9, 2014, 13:29 Flatline
harlock wrote on Aug 9, 2014, 11:12:
Axis wrote on Aug 9, 2014, 08:37:
I won't be near as excited if they don't use DnD (or at a minimum D20) as the core again.

DnD 5e doesnt really lend itself very well to video games.. 4e practically was a video game in pnp format, but it was also super bloated and just insanely massive, but also goofy and not really dnd at all

d20 (pathfinder) is really the only option

Bullshit hackmaster is old school AD&D with a new paint job. Literally.

D20/3.x/pathfinder has always had issues with the jump to video games, and if you want to play 4th edition, go boot up WoW because that's what they really wanted to be (plus, what point of 4th's errata? End of life 4th was kind of a disaster because the writers gave up, and there are entire gaming systems that were proposed, "refined" and then abandoned during the tides of errata that came and went), and 5th edition has some stunning logic bombs in it that just don't make sense.
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News Comments > Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition Announced
17. Re: Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition Announced Aug 9, 2014, 01:43 Flatline
Good to see that it still is kicking sort of.

My main complaint was that it felt like maybe 1/3 of the game got cut for budgetary purposes. I mean, there's that whole sub-plotline of the rap megastar forming a friendship with you and offering you a shitload of money making business, you say sure let's do that, and then... nothing the plot is completely abandoned.

The drug busts through the CCTV cameras sucked too. Little things like that.
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News Comments > Morning Mobilization
10. Re: Morning Mobilization Aug 9, 2014, 01:40 Flatline
Also, great article. A fantasy high magic version of Pirates!? Where do I sign up?  
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News Comments > Morning Mobilization
9. Re: Morning Mobilization Aug 9, 2014, 01:23 Flatline
HoSpanky wrote on Aug 8, 2014, 13:11:
I'm blown away by how much money was burned on games that...just didn't sell. And he's getting back up for a third time to try again. Archmage rises doesn't look to be my kind of game, I have an aversion to turn-based games. Not sure why. But I hope it sells well.
I wouldn't be surprised if he got a small, short surge of sales on his other two games (is the storybook actually a game?) due to this article. Nothing that would justify their creation costs, but maybe a small chunk that could be funneled into Archmage.

I'm aware of an IOS game that has had like 30 million spent on developing it. The tech behind it is incredible and insanely powerful, but in the move from PC to IOS they've basically kneecapped most of the tech to shoehorn into ipads and iphones. I really don't know how it can make a profit. It's been 3-4 years of dev time and releases and is still bleeding money.

What's crazy is that the software is basically interactive real time music generation software that writes surprisingly good pop and rock music with little interaction on the fly. Why this shit isn't in video games and MMOs and shit all over the place is beyond me. Custom, real-time soundtracks that write themselves based on what's going on in the game seems like a natural fit for MMOs and shit.
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