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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 1955 (Pro)
User ID 34131
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - Dishonored
37. Re: Ships Ahoy - Dishonored Oct 10, 2012, 16:02 Flatline
Verno wrote on Oct 10, 2012, 15:46:
Flatline wrote on Oct 10, 2012, 15:11:
That's my point. I consider this a design flaw. Punishing you for being creative and having *fun* in the game blows from a design standpoint.

You're not really punished though and its all in service to the story, it's one of the few games that ties its design mechanics into the story very well. The stealth system is surprisingly robust, I've knocked over an object and caused NPCs to come investigate. After testing it at varying distances it's not implemented in a sloppy way either. I don't really care for seeing how hidden I am or not although I guess I can see why others would want that. It still seems like cheating to me, I'd prefer to play it in character and use the lean keys. Game is very refreshing and I am playing without save scumming which makes every decision pretty important.

Generally the AI is pretty solid I'll agree. I just wish I had some cues. Maybe give them to me in Dark Vision mode. I could totally live with that. It's supposed to be magic after all. I mean, they give you the vision cones of the NPCs in that mode. A darkness cue might be nice.

Oh and I never spam saves in a game like this. Hell I don't even spam saves in xcom. Half the fun is living with the decisions you've made. Usually the only time I save is when I'm stopping (or periodically if a game is prone to crash), or just before a *major* branching decision point. I agree it makes the game way more fun.

Oh, and as I mentioned in a previous thread, Gabe & Tycho over at Penny Arcade torpedo'd the game, proving once again that I seem to have inverse opposite taste in video games from those guys most of the time.
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - Dishonored
32. Re: Ships Ahoy - Dishonored Oct 10, 2012, 15:11 Flatline
jacobvandy wrote on Oct 10, 2012, 05:20:
Lethal is way too much fun to worry about getting a "darker" ending, IMO. Running around neck-stabbing dudes or sniping them with the crossbow and having them go *POOF* beats out choking them and hiding bodies by a mile. And that's just stealthy lethal; I plan to do an all-out loud playthrough after this and actually get some use out of that really cool pistol.

That's my point. I consider this a design flaw. Punishing you for being creative and having *fun* in the game blows from a design standpoint.
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - Dishonored
31. Re: Ships Ahoy - Dishonored Oct 10, 2012, 15:09 Flatline
Ray Marden wrote on Oct 10, 2012, 12:58:
It is basically Thief, but with swords and magic.

I wouldn't put it up against Thief. The stealth, while pretty solid, is nothing nearly as good as Thief's stealth system. A simple cue as to how visible you actually are would be immensely useful. I've hidden in the deepest, darkest shadows and been seen from across a courtyard by the AI. Other times, I have been relatively close and been ignored in shadows I could swear weren't that dark. I've fallen to the "stay out of line of sight" stealth gameplay, which while good, isn't nearly as good as Thief.
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown
82. Re: Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown Oct 10, 2012, 04:55 Flatline
InBlack wrote on Oct 10, 2012, 04:05:
Prez wrote on Oct 10, 2012, 02:36:
Creston mentioned this but damn is money hard to come by in the early game. In the original once you had some missions under your belt and you could sell excess alien equipment money wasn't too much of a problem as long as you spent wisely and didn't let any big donor countries withdraw their funding. In XCOM, it seems you are perpetually poor. I'm thinking that China ought to start coughing up the chedda' if they want me to save their Commie butts! I have my scientists and engineers searching the couch cushions in their rec areas for the money I need to build a satellite and uplink station.

Another nitpick - why can't a futuristic badass soldier take a grenade AND a medkit? And a scope for their rifle? The prohibitive loadout limitations are weird, but I guess they are trying to promote you having to make tough choices.

These kinds of prohibitions kind of make sense if you have a squad of 8 or 12 soldiers, for balance reasons obviously. But 4??? Its almost like they forgot to patch it out once they decided to go with the more 'compact' squad sizes.

In any case I caved in and bought the game. Its downloading at home as we speak. Im too much of a fan of the original two games to NOT try this one even if I end up not liking it and Ive read enough reviews to be reasonably sure its a pretty good and fun game, even if they skimped on some things with regards to the original. One thing Ive read very nearly changed my mind though:
*SPOILER in secret text*
There is no Cydonia, no going to Mars in the final mission

All I want to know is, should I start on Classic Ironman, or Normal Ironman?? Opinions?

Four differences I've noticed between Classic and Normal mode:

1. Intervening terrain doesn't matter NEARLY as much in normal mode. I've shot through walls, planters, whatever, and killed stuff with no LOS in the action camera. Bullets flying through the terrain.

2. Most troopers will survive 2 hits in Normal. In Classic, basically it's 1-shot, 1-kill. Keeping your troops alive is fucking psychotic until they level up some.

3. You're given aural directional cues to unrevealed aliens in Normal. No luck in Classic.

4. In normal, sectoids at least will eventually come at you in many missions. In Classic, the goddamn enemies hunker down and wait for you.

Other notes:

* You start with Officer's school if you ditch the f*cking tutorial, which I hated. As soon as you get a troop up to Sargent, you can unlock a 5th squad member for 50 credits (which is highway robbery but whatever).

* I ditched the move & snipe for squad sight and when it works it's the f*cking shit. I set my sniper on overwatch, park her somewhere up on high, and someone on the other side of the map moves and gets shot to hell and back. Never can see them when it's her turn (A bug perhaps?) but overwatch does work.

* Fuck I'm poor. Did I mention fuck I'm poor? I'm given like 200 creds a month, which will make me 4 medkits.

* Individual countries hit full panic mode WAY WAY WAY faster than in the original x-com. By the end of the first month, purely by managing countries by terror level, I had 3 of them max'd out, usually in continents that I couldn't actually deploy a satellite to because it requires like 500 credits to build a satellite station and deploy it.

* I miss random missions. I really do. You only have like 5 missions to go until you hit your first panic mission as part of the script. It's not enough time. I'm starting to wonder if I should even deploy to the fucking event because my squad is so not-ready.

* No economy to speak of. Yeah, there's the grey market, but they don't pay fuck-all for stuff and the guns and shit you do manufacture you can't sell. So item economy is of unbelievable importance. Don't crank out 5 scopes- build one for each sniper. Don't build out a half dozen laser rifles- build one for each troop going into battle. Sometimes a country will let you try to sell stuff to them for a reward, and then if it's worth it you crank out more units. But I am realizing you should never have surplus weapons if you can avoid it.
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - Dishonored
14. Re: Ships Ahoy - Dishonored Oct 10, 2012, 04:35 Flatline
I played a few hours of it last night and it's a great setting and a tolerably good game. Art design is top notch, setting is way fascinating (I'd like a TTRPG in this setting, or just a straight up RPG) but the setting is a dual-edged sword. Reading all the books and stuff and using the heart (which when used offers insight into people, places, and things) gives off massive spoilers to the universe early-on. I won't say anything, but it'll be interesting to see if my suspicions pan out, or if they're even addressed.

Gameplay is... yeah kind of Deus Ex-ish and Bioshock-ish. I just hate, hate, HATE the design decision to basically give you all these freakishly amazing toys to play with, and then "punish" you for using them. I'm not playing a total non-lethal playthrough, but I'm playing that blood is bad for business, and right now I just creep around and choke people out one at a time, or hit them with a sleeping dart. Yay. I probably wouldn't be doing this if the game didn't intone that kill-facing lots of people leads to a darker ending at the beginning of the goddamn game. Oh well.

Architectual design is a mish-mash. You'll see nods to everything from Half-Life 2 (Combine walls look an awful lot like plague walls) to Victorian Colonialist. I just went into the first assassination and noted, with fond affection, that there's a distinct fascist visual vibe to the whole thing. If you have ever seen Ian McKellen's Richard III (with it's WW2 alternate Fascist England setting) you're spot on here.

As I said before, I'm enjoying it, but I really, REALLY want to have a proper roleplaying game in this setting. That being said, I don't see it staying on my hard drive long after I finish it. I may go back and try to get creative with my murderating, but I dunno.
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown
66. Re: Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown Oct 9, 2012, 20:22 Flatline
Fuck Terror missions. That is all. Those goddamn chrysalids are impossible.  
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown
65. Re: Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown Oct 9, 2012, 20:21 Flatline
BobBob wrote on Oct 9, 2012, 19:04:
Is this game 2.5 times better than Torchlight 2? Because it costs 2.5 times as much.

Oh dude 1/10 on your trolling effort. EPIC FAIL.
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown
56. Re: Ships Ahoy - XCOM: Enemy Unknown Oct 9, 2012, 17:57 Flatline
BobBob wrote on Oct 9, 2012, 15:23:
Is this turn based? If so, better off just playing chess at the coffee shop.

I'm a major board game fan, and even I have to say 2/10. Major troll failure boyo. Come up with something better.
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News Comments > XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews
59. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews Oct 9, 2012, 01:54 Flatline
Classic is a fucking challenge. I'm 4 or 5 missions in and just got TPK'd when two thin men warped into the mission map behind me and got a nice fat firing angle on my entire squad. I ragequit, and probably will need to start again, WITHOUT the tutorial, which went on for entirely too long and led you by the goddamn nose too long too. In fact, I suspect that my frustration was at the tutorial taking 90 minutes to play through. Although warping enemies into superior firing positions is pretty much one of the most infuriating game "cheats" out there.

The defensive angles are a little funky too. Baddies would fire on me in angles I'd swear I was in full cover and it'd bypass cover entirely. I guess it was like right along the damn boarder.

Still, that means the AI is good if I'm cursing at the game on mission 5.

Edit: I also had my first altitude bug which on that same level which cost me my assault trooper. I moved him into cover and he jumped down a ledge instead.

This comment was edited on Oct 9, 2012, 02:03.
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News Comments > XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews
47. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews Oct 8, 2012, 23:51 Flatline
9 minutes to the unlock.

I love living on the West Coast sometimes.
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News Comments > Battlefield: Bad Company TV Series Planned
14. Re: Battlefield: Bad Company TV Series Planned Oct 8, 2012, 23:49 Flatline
Oh yay. I hope they decide to use real-life combat zones that are going on right now so we can all laugh about how half the casulaties in the latest firefight in Afghanistan was due to Bad Company accidentally dropping napalm on the prick commander's base. Cue canned laugh track.  
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News Comments > XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews
38. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews Oct 8, 2012, 20:37 Flatline
WaltC wrote on Oct 8, 2012, 19:48:
Beamer wrote on Oct 8, 2012, 10:27:

Why would it depend on difficulty level?
Did you play the original? It depends on how many times you play and how you treat end-game missions. I've put thousands of hours into the original because I've replayed it thousands of times. And I always rush through the later game missions, usually ignoring them altogether.

I bought all of the originals (when they were newly released) and played the crap out of them. One of the greatest things about the originals--I thought--was the truly creepy, other-wordly, music played behind the turn-based combat sequences. I loved that music, and I loved that atmosphere! I downloaded and played the demo of the new game and it looks like a lot of fun, but in the one battle sequence I've played through in the demo (don't know how large the demo is, really) the background music and sound effects sounded much more like Rap-meets-Disco-Meets-New Age. That spine-tingling creepiness of the original wasn't there in the demo. Demo seemed fun, though, and true to some aspects of the game.

But I've always wondered why, if you are going to spend the money to acquire the IP and develop the game--why wouldn't you, couldn't you use the *original* combat sound tracks for the game? To my knowledge, no one attempting remakes of the series has ever done that and it has always mystified me. That creepy music during those periods heightened the tension and really transported to the player into an unearthly scenario. IE, it really creeped the player out--which is what made it so much fun for me and the millions of other people who've played the originals since.

Has anyone mentioned whether the game ever gets that right? It's hard to understand how a remake could miss that key element in the original games.

Have you *played* the original X-Com recently? I have- this past weekend. The music is incredibly basic MIDI synth tracks that I found incredibly 90's cheesy. In fact, it reminded me of the soundtrack to the Genesis game Shadowrun (which incidentally I love because of how bad it is). I chuckled at it more than once. I suspect the tension of playing the game back then when everything was new and tense and cutting-edge was what gave the music it's appeal to you. In this case, memory really is rose-tinted.

Seriously- go back and listen to the original soundtrack. If they used that music today it'd be ridiculed. Several remakes do manage to squeeze in the original themes and variations on those themes, but to just copy the music over A/B would be terrible.
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News Comments > Dishonored Reviews
66. Re: Dishonored Reviews Oct 8, 2012, 20:28 Flatline
Prez wrote on Oct 8, 2012, 18:42:
Not necessarily. There are 3 or 4 reviewers with whom I share a common set of gaming "values"; that is to say that we have similar tastes, preferences and petpeeves. When one of these reviewers reviews a game their opinion counts far more heavily than a reviewer who I am not familiar with. Rather than just dismissing all reviews as useless I would recommend finding reviewers who you trust and have similar gaming tastes. I think it would be better to spend time figuring out which reviewers are like you rather than being an obnoxious ass to random people on an Internet forum.

This is generally where I end up too. Other reviewers I'll read/watch for entertainment value (I have almost nothing in common with Zero Punctuation reviews for example).

The only exception I generally have is Penny Arcade. If Gabe or Tycho give gushing, overwhelming reviews of the game, and use words like "digital genetics" or "deeply rewarding" or "heroine for some deep part of my brain" and shit like that, I stay away. The only game they ever gushed like that and I liked was the board game Pandemic. Otherwise, I tend to absolutely loathe the bland, boring, repetitive, almost obsessive-compulsive gaming that they absolutely can't get enough of. I used to think we're playing different games and then I realized that we *are*. I play games for escapism and entertainment, they actually muse what school cafeteria lunch is like in the world of Pokemon.
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News Comments > Dishonored Reviews
53. Re: Dishonored Reviews Oct 8, 2012, 17:07 Flatline
Leper wrote on Oct 8, 2012, 11:22:
From your content-less responses, we can agree that you have nothing substantial to say on the matter. So, go ahead and snap up your $60 game because some guy on the internet told you to.

The game reviews are indicating a high level of quality, the people here are already interested in the game, and they might not see $60 as a huge investment. Why shouldn't they buy the game?

To be fair, they gave Diablo 3 stellar reviews too and I found that to quickly deteriorate into a pile of dog crap.
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News Comments > XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews
33. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews Oct 8, 2012, 16:58 Flatline
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 8, 2012, 15:48:
*shrug* Never heard the guy before. If I knew going in he did review satire my response would have been different. I just assumed he was the loser he was presenting himself as.

I've never heard of the guy either, but when he started pulling shit out of his ass it was pretty apparent he wasn't meant to be taken seriously.
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News Comments > XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews
30. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Reviews Oct 8, 2012, 15:46 Flatline
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 8, 2012, 12:40:
LittleMe wrote on Oct 8, 2012, 12:31:

Excellent review.
Wow -- the definition of clueless. (the reviewer, I assume you are being sarcastic)

Satire is lost on some people.

The dude says it's got 64 player multiplayer. He's obviously pulling things out of his ass.

Granted, it's a boring as f*ck video, but it's not serious.
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News Comments > Steam Top 10
37. Re: Steam Top 10 Oct 7, 2012, 18:48 Flatline
dj LiTh wrote on Oct 7, 2012, 17:29:
Prez wrote on Oct 7, 2012, 16:04:
Okay who is the biggest classic X-COM fan here on Blues (That would be besides me) who is also buying XCOM on release day? If you convince me of your faithfulness to the almighty Microprose version and swear on your Ufopedia that the new one will be every bit as good I will preorder.

Otherwise, at least let me know if it is true to its divine heritage once you've played it and I'll buy it.

XCOM is my favorite game of all time. With Tie Fighter coming a very close 2nd. I've watched and read everything there is about this game. Played the demo, it feels like xcom. I cant stress that feels like xcom....No other xcom clone ever gave me that feeling. This is the real deal. Buy it Prez! If its a flop you have my permission to a verbal public flogging of me!

The interesting thing is that they ditched the biggest leftover of Turn-Based games; the action point.

Not only do I not miss it from the demo, but I immediately basically had a "eureka!" moment. I *loved* x-com but *hated* the fiddliness of action points. It's one of those things where what little was lost is far surpassed by how much better it is not having to f*ck with action points.
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News Comments > Steam Top 10
36. Re: Steam Top 10 Oct 7, 2012, 18:41 Flatline
RailWizard wrote on Oct 7, 2012, 14:59:
Beelzebud wrote on Oct 7, 2012, 14:26:
In the late 1990's X-Com was anything but a niche game. The first time I played it was on a Playstation console. It is one of the greatest strategy games ever made. It was on multiple platforms, sold well, and won praise from every sector of the gaming press.

Yeah ok. Mechwarrior wasn't niche either I suppose. lol feel free to keep rewriting history, not like I give a fuck, I just think it's funny.

If we're going to be honest about 90's computer gaming, the entire industry was a niche.
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News Comments > Game Reviews
12. Re: Game Reviews Oct 4, 2012, 15:09 Flatline
Verno wrote on Oct 4, 2012, 11:13:
He's not really a reviewer, more like an entertainer. He rarely bothers to contextualize his complaints which is frustrating at times if you take it seriously. I agree with him on the characters being a bit samey, three of them are basically rehashes of the first games classes. Heck even Zero has a lot of overlap with Mordecai. That said, I think he missed the boat with his complaints. There is a lot of stuff to take to task in BL2 (loot variety, backtracking, etc) and he instead focused on minor personal complaints.

Yeah I don't have particularly similar tastes to Yhatzee and we agree/disagree about 50/50. He's usually pretty funny though.

However, I found his BL2 review to not even be entertaining. Which I suspect happens more and more at this point because he's cranking out the reviews weekly, and when he just feels blah about a game his creativity drops significantly.
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News Comments > Blizzard's Pardo: Single-Player Games an "Endangered Species"
58. Re: Blizzard's Pardo: Single-Player Games an Oct 4, 2012, 14:45 Flatline
Slashman wrote on Oct 3, 2012, 20:39:
Yeah I mean look how crappy the sales for Torchlight 2 were. And Skyrim totally cratered in the sales department too. Everyone just pirated that one or rented it...

The Witcher 2 was a flop. The Batman: Arkham games tanked hard. Xcom: Enemy Unknown will probably be a failure. Dues Ex:HR, The Fallout series, Bastion, Dragon Age: Origins. So much single player fail. How does the industry stand it?

From Blizzard's POV, Torchlight 2, Witcher 2, the batman games, and xcom *are* financial failures. Remember, they were bringing in more than 60 million a month for YEARS. And if WoW sales numbers are the new normal for Blizzard, single player games are a waste of time and money, even if they're financially successful. They just aren't successful *enough*.
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1955 Comments. 98 pages. Viewing page 36.
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