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Real Name Tom   
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Signed On May 21, 2000, 15:34
Total Comments 1217 (Pro)
User ID 4838
 
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News Comments > DCS: A10C Warthog Interview
7. Re: DCS: A10C Warthog Interview Feb 10, 2011, 13:17 Tom
 
GAU-8 Avenger vs. zombies. YES! DCS: A10C / L4D mashup, please.  
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News Comments > On PC Crysis 2
16. Re: On PC Crysis 2 Feb 9, 2011, 15:32 Tom
 
Bhruic wrote on Feb 9, 2011, 15:07:
They assume that the game should run perfectly on the highest settings given a reasonably high performance machine at the time of release. And if not, it's unoptimized garbage.

As opposed to what? Releasing a game that you can't run on max settings with a high powered machine? What's the point in releasing a game that people can't run on max settings with the best machines of the day? Sure, maybe 5 years later, they can finally do it, but that's not going to help your game now. Including settings in the game that no one can actually use is pretty stupid, and if that leads to complaints about your game, the only one you should be blaming is yourself.

Ok see if you can wrap your head around this: On the PC, games have to support a huge variety of configurations. From low powered systems up to extremely powerful ones. This means the developer has to make their game scalable. If they fail at this task, the game will require too powerful of a machine to run at all, or it won't take advantage of the power of the more powerful machines, or both.

Scalability involves varying the burden the game places on the system. For example, varying the polygon count, shader complexity, fill rate burden, physics load, AI complexity, and so on. Modern systems are so complex that it's very difficult to automatically adapt the game's burden on the system to find the optimum point where the game offers the best balance of framerate and visual quality.

So, games tend to automate some of their choices, while leaving other choices to the user in the form of settings. Also, different users have different priorities - sometimes even the same user will want to prioritize framerate at one time, and visual quality at another time.

Now here is a very important point: The game developer has to tune the settings (which settings are available and what they do) to find a balance between fitting the scaling abilities of the game and being accessible to the user, who typically doesn't want to learn about all of the gory internal details of the game systems. (And if they do, they can tweak settings in config files and such.)

If the balance is too conservative, the game's scaling may support looking way better on a more powerful system, but the user won't have a way to use it... so the potential is wasted. This is needless waste.

If the balance is too aggressive, you get people whose feelings are hurt by running at lower than the highest settings when they think their system is totally awesome. You should focus more on what you get for a given level of settings, rather than just whether or not they are the highest settings available.

Today's high powered machine will always be blown away by tomorrow's mid-range. So if the game developer already has to do all this work to make the game scalable, why not future-proof the game a bit? Haven't you ever revisited a game after a few years and had the satisfaction of being able to crank everything to the max now that you have a generation or two newer components?

Offering high end scaling also provides some reward for those who really do go all out and build very high end systems. What's the point of building such a system if you can't get real-world benefits from it? So you can get some number that's higher than some other number in a benchmark?
 
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News Comments > On PC Crysis 2
15. Re: On PC Crysis 2 Feb 9, 2011, 15:14 Tom
 
Ok you're right, my comment on SLI was too harsh. It's not stupid if you're actually effectively addressing a bottleneck with it. The examples you gave are the only real cases where it makes sense. What I was thinking about is the typical gaming setup involving a single monitor costing under $1000 (just the cost of the monitor I'm talking about), where SLI seems to be more trouble and cost than it's worth.

And you're right, I've never had SLI. I'm basing my thinking on reviews, comments from people who do have SLI, release notes, specs, prices, and a modest understanding of the techniques and bottlenecks of realtime 3D graphics.
 
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News Comments > On PC Crysis 2
5. Re: On PC Crysis 2 Feb 9, 2011, 13:01 Tom
 
Crysis was a problem of perception and settings. People don't understand what settings are and what they mean. They assume that the game should run perfectly on the highest settings given a reasonably high performance machine at the time of release. And if not, it's unoptimized garbage.

When Crysis came out, I played it on a GeForce 8800 GTS with most of the settings on medium. For the most part, the game still looked amazing, and the frame rate was fine. Not perfect, but not a trainwreck either.

I think people overpay for their components, waste money on stupid stuff like SLI, or they just cheap out and expect to still run stuff on high settings... either way, instead of taking responsibility or looking at the situation rationally, they just blame the game developers.

The logical response for the game developers is to treat their customers as the idiots most of them are and stop offering extreme settings. Sure, the game may still present similar looking settings, but what they mean will be different. As a result, games will max out on the present (often not even the high end present) instead of scaling into the future.

Most game developers have already done this. Thanks to all the complainers out there, really appreciate it, nice job. You sure showed them.

Now you can shift your complaints to "oh it's limited by the console!" No, it's limited by your stupidity. Cause and effect.
 
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News Comments > Morning Metaverse
2. Re: Groupon Feb 9, 2011, 11:36 Tom
 
Yep, that ad was dumb, dumb, dumb. Google must be thrilled.  
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News Comments > Battlefield 3 Details
42. Re: Battlefield 3 Details Feb 8, 2011, 14:39 Tom
 
I have a couple hundred hours into BC2 and have hardly ever seen obvious cheating going on, but I saw a really blatant instance of it the other day. Some punk was spawn camping a whole team on one of the Vietnam maps. As soon as someone would spawn or otherwise come into his field of view, he'd instantly headshot em with a machinegun. It was sad. But when that happens.. it's new server time.

As for commander mode. Well. I kinda miss airdropping jeeps and supply crates onto snipers, but otherwise it's not a huge loss. And a lot of whiny server admins wouldn't even let you do that. Sort of like admins in BC2 that kick you because they got Carl'd one too many times. Time to man up, babies!
 
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News Comments > Battlefield 3 Details
9. Re: Battlefield 3 Details Feb 8, 2011, 10:51 Tom
 
The maps in BC2 are large and full of detail. And BF3 is supposedly going to go way beyond that. How long does it take to make a map like that? Is it really something a modder would do? I'm still remembering what it was like to map in the Quake 1 / Unreal era... I would hope the tools are way better nowadays, but are they better enough to compensate for the increased detail and size of one of these maps?

I also wonder how much map-making grunt work will be necessary for the fully destructible environments in BF3. I imagine it was pretty labor-intensive for BC2. Then there's the new lighting workflow using some middleware for realtime radiosity. Could maps be made without using this middleware's tools? Would they have to license the middleware's tools for doing some kind of mod tools release? What about stuff they got from other EA businesses like the new animation system?

These things get complicated.
 
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News Comments > Frostbite 2 Trailer, BF3 Details
41. Re: Frostbite 2 Trailer, BF3 Details Feb 7, 2011, 18:52 Tom
 
Really folks, how hard is it to use your brain to correct this:
"Huge Maps. Tanks Defibrillators. Jets. Team play"

into this:
"Huge maps. Tanks. Defibrillators. Jets. Team play"

Or is it that it's just not enough to have merely tanks and defibrillators? You won't be satisfied until there are also tank defibrillators, now that your imagination has been stimulated by this quirky juxtaposition brought on by the tragic omission of a single punctuation mark...
 
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News Comments > Ridge Racer Unbounded Announced
12. Re: Ridge Racer Unbounded Feb 6, 2011, 11:38 Tom
 
The dictionary begs to differ.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unbounded
 
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News Comments > Evening Mobilization
9. Re: Evening Mobilization Jan 15, 2011, 11:51 Tom
 
My impression is that laws like this are driven primarily by publicity, statistics, anecdotes, and crusades by the victims' families - which all have their roots in the same poor decisions: texting while driving is the cause. Laws against it are the effect. Simple and inevitable.

Maybe if some idiots and arrogant pricks didn't think they were so awesome that they could handle it, none of this would have ever happened. Same goes for DUI laws. These kinds of laws are more important for those people than for the "lowest common denominator", which is nothing more than a sad way of trying to say "but I'm better than everyone else!"

Don't be a fool. Anyone who takes risks long enough will eventually suffer the consequences. In the case of texting while driving others may suffer as well, which is absolutely unforgivable.
 
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News Comments > Evening Mobilization
6. Re: Evening Mobilization Jan 15, 2011, 00:41 Tom
 
Sepharo wrote on Jan 15, 2011, 00:29:
That's like blaming the alcohol instead of the drunk.

...the hell? No. The drunk makes a decision to drink just like a texter makes a decision to text. That is a person making a poor decision, and I believe people should be held accountable for making poor decisions.
 
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News Comments > Evening Mobilization
3. Re: Evening Mobilization Jan 15, 2011, 00:21 Tom
 
No, you are wrong. NO ONE should text and drive. A correctly reasoning human should be able to understand this. Do you really need to first add to your list 'die' or 'kill others'?

If you think I'm being overly dramatic and there's nothing wrong with some people texting and driving, then maybe you could imagine explaining your viewpoint to the families of those who died utterly senseless and preventable deaths.
 
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News Comments > Evening Tech Bits
2. Re: Evening Tech Bits Nov 20, 2010, 03:16 Tom
 
You get what you pay for.  
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News Comments > Dune 2: The Golden Path
11. Re: Dune 2: The Golden Path Nov 19, 2010, 10:10 Tom
 
Mmn Egghead Software.. I sold software there on 360KB 5 1/4" floppies. No baggies, though. Good times.

Dune 2 rocked. I used to defeat the AI by building a wall across the entire map. And then there were the lovely spoken announcements:

"Harkonnen unit deployed." "Harkonnen unit destroyed." "Harkonnen unit deployed." "Harkonnen unit destroyed." "Harkonnen unit deployed." "Harkonnen unit destroyed." "Harkonnen unit deployed." "Harkonnen unit destroyed." "Harkonnen unit deployed." "Harkonnen unit destroyed." "Harkonnen unit deployed." "Harkonnen unit destroyed."
 
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News Comments > DRM-Free Witcher 2 Preorders on GOG.com
11. Re: DRM-Free Witcher 2 Preorders on GOG.com Nov 18, 2010, 15:06 Tom
 
sambront wrote on Nov 18, 2010, 14:33:
You know what will stick around longer than Steam? No DRM at all.

I buy 99% of my games on Steam because I like the platform, they have acceptable DRM (IMO), and I also think they will be around a long time.

But GOG.com doesn't have any DRM at all. There is no downside.

That would be true, except for the possibility of GOG disappearing (or you otherwise losing the ability to re-download from them) while you don't have a good backup of what you purchased. Of course, the same is true for Steam, which is why I look to the odds of long-term survival.
 
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News Comments > DRM-Free Witcher 2 Preorders on GOG.com
5. Re: DRM-Free Witcher 2 Preorders on GOG.com Nov 18, 2010, 14:28 Tom
 
lol.. how quickly all is forgiven with GOG.

I'll pick up this game on Steam when it's $30 or less, IF it turns out to be a good game. Nothing against GOG's publicity stunt really, I just find Steam to be most convenient and likely to stick around for the long haul. They've earned my business.
 
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News Comments > FINAL FANTASY XIV Explanations
32. Re: FINAL FANTASY XIV Explanations Nov 17, 2010, 14:50 Tom
 
Mmn FF7.. I don't think it's just nostalgia for that one, but it definitely seems to be a polarizing game. The graphics are really dated now but for the time they were great. That blend of 2D and 3D was something special. Now it's a lost art.

As for the translation, there have been worse. That can be remedied by playing it in the original Japanese, though. You know, there are bits of dialogue that were simply omitted from the translation. For example, near the beginning when Jessie is explaining about the sensor sweeps on the trains, she explains:

[whisperingly] Since it gets dark, there's a lot of chikan (groping)... in the ID detection area.

I think they left that out of the English version.
 
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News Comments > FINAL FANTASY XIV Explanations
19. Re: FINAL FANTASY XIV Explanations Nov 16, 2010, 15:58 Tom
 
Just because Final Fantasy and Square Enix suck nowadays doesn't mean all Japanese developers suck. There are some excellent RPGs on the PS3. For example, Ryuu ga gotoku series (Yakuza), Valkyria Chronicles, Tales of Vesperia, Atelier series.  
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News Comments > WoW Welcomes You Back
23. Re: WoW Welcomes You Back Nov 15, 2010, 14:45 Tom
 
Death to MMOs!!! Worst genre ever created.  
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News Comments > TF2 Maintenance Tuesday
9. Re: TF2 Maintenance Tuesday Nov 6, 2010, 16:42 Tom
 
Hey, it was good while it lasted. I got a couple hundred hours of fun out of it, which is more than I can say for most games. It's sad to see it go down like this, but there are also plenty of other games out there that need playing.  
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1217 Comments. 61 pages. Viewing page 30.
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